How to lose belly fat for teenage girls A preventable condition, obesity affects more than 340 million children aged 5-19 years. This is an alarming state that raises the question of how to lose belly fat in teenage girls. We say girls because belly fat is more of a problem in females as regards aesthetics.
Moreover, the tendency to develop a belly bulge is more common in girls. This is because of their high fat to muscle ratio. Boys have more muscle to fat ratio so they are resistant, yet not immune, to developing a tummy bulge. Boys can handle a benign protruding belly with a bit of exercise and they are good to show off their 6-packs. The situation is not bad for girls so do not fret. There are ways to control this dilemma.
The prevalence of obesity has tripled between 1975 and 2016 all across the world. Deaths due to overweight and obesity are on the rise globally. Owning a beer belly should concern you. It is because of its association with heart, brain and other diseases as metabolic disorders.
Teenage years are tough. It is a period when the body undergoes physical changes. It may be difficult for a teenager to cope with these changes. One strives to look their best during the teenage years. Donning a sexy bikini for a beach party and showing off the beautiful curves in party dresses. This is what one cares for.
Belly fat indicates dangerous visceral fat that surrounds the internal organs. So the more the beer-gut appearance, the higher the risk of disease. If you are a teenager catering to potbelly, then there are bad and good news for you.
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The bad news is; you are prone to developing health ailments if you do not take care.
The most probable cause of belly fat in the teenage years is
- unhealthy eating habits and a
- sedentary lifestyle
The good news is; your body is in optimal working conditions while you are young. So a little effort goes a long way if you take care of belly fat in the early years.
Many problems tag obesity in the teenage years. Some of them may be visible and aesthetically unpleasant while others go beyond the eye. The teenage belly fat is behind peer pressure and ridicule. This is an important issue for teenage girls. The girl belly fat leads to emotional distress and psychosocial trauma. It results in social exclusion and its effects on health are indisputable.
A strong family support and lifestyle changes help control this demon early on. Fighting belly fat should not be an individual struggle.
Losing belly fat as a teenage girl may be difficult but it is possible. The millennial teenager spends an average of 31 hours in front of the computer screen. This is beside the 56 hours of screen time in front of the T.V. A rough estimate is about 87 out of 168 hours a week. The rest of the time teenagers miss out on physical activity and family time.
The fast-paced life has made it difficult to arrange for healthy and nutritious meals. T.V dinners and fast food meals are taking over home-made family dinners.
These may seem petty factors but they contribute big time to
- over-consumption of calories
- intake of zero-calorie food as junk and fast food items
So if you want to get rid of that potbelly or tummy bulge, no matter how small it appears, you will have to make major lifestyle changes.
Do not let the above statement intimidate you. How to lose fat as a teenager may seem daunting in the wake of fast-paced life and busy schedules. Yet there are easy ways that cut back on the tummy hump without disturbing your hectic school and social life. Read on to know.
First things first – How To Lose Belly Fat For Teenage Girls
The feat is not achievable if you lack one thing. That is the resolve and determination. If you have the willpower that dwindles now and then, the image of the fat teenage girl is not going anywhere. So, strengthen your resolve and stay put.
How to have an unwavering resolve? The answer is simple. Be realistic about your goals. If you think by taking lemon water or cinnamon tea would dissolve the belly fat overnight, you are sure to fail. The process of fat accumulation in our body happens over a while. It will take some time to do away with it also. So patience leads to perseverance. It helps you think with a clear mind and mark realistic and practical goals.
Then the most important question remains. Why do you want to lose weight and cut back on belly fat? Believe us. It may seem not too important a question when you start your weight loss journey but it is worthy of a thought. The root cause for your concern becomes the driving force behind your quest.
So if you want to look good only or get in good shape for the upcoming school night event or graduation party, your efforts would last till that.
If your target is to become the popular girl in school and escape peer pressure, the journey would last that long.
If your efforts gyrate around being in good health and avoid the risk of developing a disease, then you are looking at long term solutions for cutting back some figure on the weight scale.
Take some waist measurements to keep a check on the progress. You can also take some snapshots for before and after results. Put on your favorite jeans or a dress that has become too tight. Take a picture of yours in the same wear after a month to motivate yourself to keep going.
The more realistic your goal is, the stronger will be your resolution. You can ensure getting speedy and lasting results by following a practical strategy.
The strategy spanning
Teen belly fat is the result of
- overconsumption of calories
- sedentary habits
- lack of physical exercise
- hectic schedules and stress
Thus, a practical approach to address this problem targets the same weak areas via
- changes in dietary habits
- move it and lose it
- integration of exercise
- relief from anxiety and stress
The three-tiered strategy
Keeping in mind the above outlines, you should aim to slice some inches off your waist via:
- Dietary changes
- Integration of exercise
- Stress relief
Let us take the designed regime one by one.
Dietary changes to lose teenage fat will not only make your clothes comfortable, but they will also help cut back on dangerous visceral fat. Wise men say; abs are made in the kitchen and not in the gym. The statement is true to dot.
A reduced potbelly will indicate the desired results. For some science-backed results, here is what you need to do.
Increase your fiber intake
Increasing the fiber content in your diet helps cut back on calories and slice some belly fat in the long run. It has a two-way action.
- Fibrous food in the gut absorbs water and delivers a feeling of fullness. It curbs appetite by lowering the levels of hunger hormones, the ghrelin.
- Besides, it also slows down the caloric absorption from the food. Glucose and other nutrients enter the blood slowly. As a result, the release of insulin occurs at a slow rate. This further helps curb unwanted hunger cravings.
All fibers are not equal. It is important to note that belly fat reduction happens when you take soluble fiber. It makes a viscous gel when mixed with water in the gut. Soluble fiber not only aids belly fat loss but also prevents it. Studies reveal increasing fiber intake by 10% every day lowers the risk of developing belly fat by 3.7%. (1)
Exclude trans fats from your diet
Labeled as partially hydrogenated fats, Trans fats are major culprits of abdominal fat gain. Packaged, processed and over-the-shelf ready-to-eat food items contain enough of Trans fat. Go for home-based food and achieve teenage fat loss.
Up your protein potion
Increasing the protein content of food not only helps meet satiety but also promotes a feeling of fullness. Proteins stimulate the release of fullness hormones. They also increase the metabolic rate of the body, which becomes a great aide to exercise.
Studies reveal that people who eat more proteins tend to have smaller bellies. (2)
Cut back on refined carbohydrates
Replacing refined and processed carbohydrates with complex variety also helps lose belly fat. It is important not to remove carbohydrates altogether from your diet.
Do away with sugar, sugar-laden drinks, and junk food. For example; soda, punch, sweet tea, alcoholic mixers containing sugar and fruit juices. Swap bread and pasta with whole-grain varieties.
Swap bad fats with good ones (fatty fish, coconut oil, olive oil)
Fats are important in our diet. Replacing the bad fats with good ones is the key to losing teen belly fat. Some of the good sources of fat include avocados, olive and coconut oil, fatty fish and nuts like walnuts. They make great snack options and keep uninvited cravings at bay.
Drink plenty of water
The simplest way for how to lose belly fat fast for teenage girls is by drinking water. And plenty of it too. Water engages the kidneys to remove waste from the body. It leads to an effective calorie burn. It keeps the metabolic clock clicking by increasing the body’s resting energy expenditure. The water molecules interact with stored belly fat and aide its removal. Water is the most effective zero-calorie drink with no side effects.
A big NO to sugars
Sugar has to go. Be it in your coffee, tea or other drinks or your food like baked items and all. Sugar is the biggest offender as regards belly fat.
Integrate fat burning drinks
Instead of sugar-laden drinks, go for drinks that help blast belly fat. Drinking warm water with some lemon juice first thing in the morning hits belly fat straight. Integrating green tea after every meal helps digest food fast. Another ingredient that targets belly fat is apple cider vinegar. A controlled study revealed positive results as regards reducing waist circumference. A tablespoon of apple cider vinegar every day for 12 weeks resulted in a loss of an inch around the waist in obese men. (4)
Probiotics are good bacteria present in our gut. They help preserve and maintain gut health and immunity. They are found in fermented foods and are available as supplements.
They play an important role in losing teenage belly fat. An appropriate pH in the gut is indispensable to lose belly fat. These include Lactobacillus Fermentum, Lactobacillus Amylovorus, and Lactobacillus gasseri. Buy a brand that contains a variety of strains. Yogurt containing the former strains reduced body fat by 3-4% for 6 weeks, as shown by a study. (5)
Intermittent fasting to overcome weight loss plateaus
We are talking about weight loss as a solution to belly fat loss in teenagers. Intermittent fasting is the game-breaker when it comes to overcoming the weight plateaus. A review study showed very encouraging results. People who adopted IF experienced a 4-7% decrease in abdominal fat for 6-24 weeks. (6)
Do not diet, make it a plan
How to reduce belly fat in teenage girls is not doable with stress. So do not aim for dieting. Instead, make a plan. Learning better and healthy food choices is the key. Skipping meals is not an answer. If you want to lose belly bulge at the same time keeping up the morale, leave out the stress part.
Exercise for a teenage girl to lose weight
Spot exercises may improve the appearance of your beer belly. Yet they are ineffective if not coupled with exercises that cut back the total body fat. This is because spot exercise strengthens the belly muscles only. They do not affect the stored fat in the belly area. Strong muscles covered by a fat layer remains invisible. To show off your six-packs, the subcutaneous fat needs to go.
Then targeted fat loss is not a practical strategy to lose teenage fat. It is because muscles do not use the stored fat directly. The fat needs to break down into small-sized particles before it enters the bloodstream.
The best exercise strategy is to combine
Aerobic exercises and cardio regimes improve your heart health. They keep the metabolic dial at high levels. They are most effective when done frequently and regularly. The intensity is not important.
Resistance training with weights or with weight machines targets specific body parts. They tone up the muscles and contribute to fat burning even at rest. The body gets chiseled at appropriate spots with a flatter tummy.
A study involving teenagers with overweight showed that “a combination of strength training and aerobic exercise led to the greatest decrease in visceral fat”. (7)
HIIT combines cardio with spot reduction. It changes the intensity of exercise during a session. The heart is challenged and the body speeds up the fat-burning process. Sprints are very effective to lose teenage girl belly fat. These activities use fatty acids as an energy source. Metabolism takes a hike and more calories get burnt.
Spot exercises for the mid-section
Exercises that target the mid-section trims down the waist perimeter competently when paired with other regimes.
A combo protocol not only takes away the boredom out of exercise but it also keeps the body responding at challenging levels. It is a way of doing an exercise the smart way instead of a harder version.
How stress-relieving techniques help lose weight fast in teenage girls
Did you know overeating and sedentary lifestyle have another partner in belly fat crime? It is stress, an unwanted attribute of our body. Belly fat is a way our body warns us of an out-of-control cortisol situation. The hormone is the result of stress, which is a common issue in teenage girls.
Stress is a natural fight or flight phenomenon. It manifests itself via cortisol release. Unfiltered stress causes a chain reaction in our bodies. Cortisol causes the body to store fat, especially in the mid-section. This belly fat acts as a hormone-secreting organ. These hormones propagate inflammatory reactions throughout the body. Inflammation is the root cause of chronic disease. That is why the belly fat is a red flag that demands attention.
When you live a high-stress life, things do not follow a normal pattern. The cortisol levels do not touch baseline levels. This results in overeating, making bad food choices and binge eating.
A vicious cycle begins that starts to disturb your sleep cycle as well. It adds to increase the stress levels even more. The body becomes low in energy expenditure with disturbed cortisol levels. The ripple effects include decreased metabolic rates, being lazy and so on.
A study conducted on middle-aged men with possible stress effects showed high cortisol levels. They had huge beer bellies as compare to their control counterparts.
Many college freshmen gain weight during their first year in college. The reasons are obvious. Called the ‘freshmen 15’, they are the students that take most stress. Another study observed young women in universities. They gained weight 36 times faster than their control counterparts who did not attend college.
Teenage girls often fall prey to peer pressure. They face stress as regards their physical appearance. Then there is always studies-related stress. Becoming one of the ‘in’ and popular girl squad adds to the situation. So if you observe a tummy bulge by the time you reach college, then it is time to take control of the situation. Here are some remedies to ease away stress from the demanding and taxing teenage years.
Go for walks
A free, low-risk and accessible activity. Walking helps you clear your mind and do away with stress. a mile walk burns approximately 100 calories depending upon your physical status. (8)
In another study, obese women took up walking for 50-70 minutes three times per week for 12 weeks. They reduced their waist by 1.1 inches and lost 1.5% of body weight. (9)
Physical activity improves mood and eases away tension and depressive thoughts. Walking is best because it is not demanding. All you need to do is to wear a good pair of shoes.
Indulge in yoga sessions
Since support is a big factor to keep you motivated, yoga sessions are the best way to achieve it. Like walking, yoga is not demanding. The only gear you need is a yoga mat. Yoga is doable as an individual or in groups. It is another great way to reduce stress or anxiety.
Hang out with like-minded peers
Support in the form of family and friends is one thing that is never too much. Take up a group hobby. Devote some time volunteering in a good cause. Spending time with people who are on the same wavelength and health-conscious is unseen support never to be looked down upon. So stick together to lose that teen tummy.
Take home message
How to lose stomach fat for teenage girls is difficult but not impossible. The young teen body is flexible in the way that it follows what is applied. If your problem is overeating, undo the belly fat by controlling the diet. If the tummy bulge is the result of inactivity, move to lose it. If stress is the culprit, ease it away via different remedies. The good thing is, no matter from which end you pick up, losing belly fat is a vicious cycle that brings good at the end of the day.