The sitting position is unflattering – even people who look very trim and fit can have a bulging tummy when they sit down. Known as a muffin top, the belly fat around your waist isn’t just a problem of aesthetic; fat in the abdominal area (also known as visceral fat) has a strong link to diseases like Type 2 diabetes and heart disease. This is why doctors ask their patients to lose excess fat around their waistline for health reasons.
Generally, anything above 40 inches (or 102cm) in men and 35 inches (or 88cm) in women are considered abdominal obesity. What this means is that even if you have a healthy BMI but have a thick waistline, you’re medically still at risk for certain diseases.
If you’re looking self-consciously at your own muffin top now – hey, stop staring and start doing something to get rid of it! There are several tried and tested ways that will definitely help reduce that annoying belly roll. Take down notes!
Going for a cup of bubble tea today after lunch? Well, hold off that thought for a while.
You probably don’t know this: added sugar is made up of 50% fructose, a substance that can only be metabolised by the liver. This means that each time you consume large amounts of added sugar, you’re overloading your liver. And when your liver is unable to metabolise fructose, it is forced to turn that into fat, which accumulates in the belly and liver.
Thankfully, the solution is simple: go for low-sugar options and if you still want to indulge in these sugary treats, do it less frequently.
Important note: Don’t let less obvious sugary beverages like fruit juices and sports drinks be your pitfall. They may sound like they’re good for your body, but contain plenty of added sugar too.
Most people who prepare their own meals in a bid to lose weight will know that including proteins in the meal plan can help them feel fuller for longer. Consuming protein doesn’t just boost your metabolism, there’s also evidence that it is effective in reducing belly fat. In fact, a study even shows that eating more high-protein foods can help reduce the risk of belly fat gain over five years.
While proteins are an ally to belly-fat-busting, refined carbs and oils are the biggest culprits for adding to your muffin top.
What are refined carbs? We’re talking about foods like white bread, white rice, bee hoon, and kway teow. To keep yourself feeling full without refined carbs, swap carbs with protein (see point #2). But if you really can’t live without carbs, consider unrefined carbs like brown rice and wholemeal bread. Low-carb diets are great for preventing Type 2 diabetes, so there’s definitely a good motivation to stick to it.
DV Tip: When you plan your meals, try to make sure 25-30% of calories consumed come from protein. Great high-protein foods include whole eggs, fish, seafood, legumes, nuts, meat, and dairy products. Get creative, and you can create lots of delicious meals with these ingredients!
You probably already know that fibrous foods can help with your bowel movement. But did you know that it can also help you feel fuller and suppress your appetite?
This is why: viscous and soluble fibres bind with water to form a thick gel that “sits” in the gut, which slows the movement of food through your digestive system, moderating the speed of digestion and absorption of nutrients. On top of this, studies are also suggesting that soluble fibres are great at reducing belly fat.
Now that you know how important it is to have fibre in your diet, go ahead and add great fibrous food sources like leafy vegetables, legumes, and whole oats into your meal plan!
Keeping active is an important part of a healthy lifestyle and definitely has a strong link to reducing belly fat.
The key obstacle that prevents most people from working out? Ill-discipline and lack of time.
For the former, consider finding a workout buddy who has similar fitness objectives so you can encourage each other to exercise together. To resolve the latter problem, find opportunities to work out during lunch or at home; signing up for a gym that’s near your workplace or home certainly helps too!
We know that general aerobic exercises like jogging and swimming help with overall fat loss and reduction in belly fat. But here’s something few people know: doing sit-ups can’t help eliminate that dreaded muffin top.
This is because spot reduction is not possible with exercise, as our body draws energy from the entire body when we exercise, instead of focusing on the one area you’re working on. This means that no matter how many sit-ups or crunches you do to train the muscles around your abs, you simply can’t specifically shed belly roll with them.
If that muffin top is annoying you and you want to eliminate it effectively and quickly, you can consider VASER Hi-def Lipo, an aesthetic procedure that sculpts your body shape.
This procedure is frequently used to get rid of excess subcutaneous body fat, create a more sculpted appearance, as well as to define underlying abdominal muscles. The great thing about VASER Hi-def Lipo is that it is able to remove both superficial and deep fat that surround muscle groups so that you can achieve visibly toned muscles.
An incision is made during the procedure and a device that emits ultrasonic waves is inserted, gently breaking down only the fat cells.
Through a gentle suction process, this procedure is able to sculpt the muscular anatomy without causing any damage to surrounding tissues.
This also means that you can achieve visible and more defined muscles. Similar to traditional liposuction, fat cells are also removed for the long term so if you continue to eat right and lead a healthy lifestyle, you’d be able to maintain the results for a long time.
In Singapore, liposuction can only be performed by doctors who are accredited by the Ministry of Health.
If you’re looking for a trusted doctor for a procedure like VASER Hi-def Lipo, you can find out more about Dr. Ivan Puah from Amaris B. Clinic, who is known for performing body sculpting treatments and one of the doctors in Singapore who is accredited to perform liposuction.
Dr. Ivan Puah is a certified VASER® practitioner, obtaining his VASER® Body Sculpting training in Colorado and Argentina. He further hones his surgical skill in gynecomastia surgeries in San Francisco. He also received training and guidance in syringe lipo-sculpture, fat grafting, and thread lift by renowned French plastic surgeon, Dr. Pierre Francois Fournier.