Whether it’s a beach trip, high school reunion, or wedding coming up this weekend, there are lots of times where we want that slimmer, flatter belly overnight. Hours in the gym running and planking, or hardcore diets, will do the trick, but lots of us don’t have that kind of time. If what you really need is someone to tell you how to lose belly fat overnight, you’ve come to the right place! Here’s seven quick tricks to have you looking slimmer by the morning!
Table of Contents
It’s nearly impossible to truly lose belly fat overnight, but it is definitely possible to make your belly flatter. One of the main ways to achieve that flatter, slimmer belly in mere hours is to decrease bloating. Here’s 5 easy ways to look and feel less bloated in the morning!
It may seem counter-intuitive, but drinking more water actually helps keep your tummy flat. Many people try to drink less when they’re slimming down for a big event, but that’s an error! Staying properly hydrated is actually one of the best ways to steer clear of unwanted bloating.
First, drinking plenty of calorie-free, caffeine-free fluids (like water) minimizes water retention. When you’re not consuming enough liquid, your body compensates by retaining extra fluids. This is great if you’re trying to survive in Death Valley, but not so wonderful if you’re trying to fit into a tight dress. So, help your body out and drink plenty of water so that it know it can get rid of the excess.
Staying hydrated also helps prevent constipation. One of the main ways we retain water is through absorbing it back from our digested food. If you’re not drinking enough water, the body tries too hard to absorb fluid back out of your poop and things can get stuck. This is especially true if you’ve been noshing on lots of fiber-rich foods recently. Few things make you feel more bloated than being constipated. So, stay hydrated to skip this whole inconvenience and keep your tummy flat.
As a general rule, aim for about 8-10 glasses of water per day – plus more if it’s hot or you work out.
Skip the Soda
Hydration is key, but all beverages are not created equal. Soda and other carbonated beverages are infused with carbonic acid, which makes them bubbly. They may taste good, but all the air in all those bubbles has to go somewhere. If you’re drinking lots of fizzy drinks, that air is ending up in your stomach. If you’re wondering how to lose belly fat overnight, filling your tummy up with carbonation won’t do the trick. Instead opt for iced tea, flat water or small amounts of 100% fruit juice.
Chewing gum or talking while you chew also increases the chance of swallowing air. So, if you’re committed to not bloating, skip those two as well.
Eating too quickly is another culprit in the battle of bloat. When you eat too quickly two bad things happen: (1) you swallow air, and (2) you don’t chew thoroughly.
As we just discussed, swallowing air leads to bloat. Nobody wants air bubbles stuck in their digestive tract. But eating too fast also has the unpleasant effect of swallowing giant chunks of food. Do you remember your mother or grandmother ever scolding you for not chewing your food enough? If you do, they had a point – and not just in terms of manners. Properly chewing your food triggers increased stomach acid production and relaxes the lower stomach, both of which speed digestion. Easier digestion prevents unwanted bloating. So, even though you may not think of it as such, chewing is a highly important part of digestion.
Did you know that fiber slows digestion? It’s a miracle food when it comes to weight loss because slower digestion means less hunger, but it’s not so good for bloating. In the short-run, eating too many high-fiber foods can undermine your ambitions of a flat belly. High fiber foods include things like whole grains (whole-wheat bread or pasta, brown rice or oatmeal), cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, cauliflower) and legumes (beans). These foods slow digestion and can generate gas, so they often make you feel more bloated – especially if you’re not used to eating them.
Don’t avoid high fiber foods for long periods of time (that can make you really sick!), but it can prove an effective strategy for minimizing short-term bloat.
Some people have food intolerances that make them more sensitive to specific foods or food groups. Two common intolerances are lactose (dairy) and gluten (wheat, barley, malt & rye). Less common offenders include fructose (the sugar in fruit) and eggs.
Scientists estimate that about 65% of the global adult population suffers from lactose intolerance, but it may actually be closer to 90% in some communities. People who are lactose intolerant have trouble breaking-down lactose, the naturally-occurring sugar in milk. As a result they can feel bloated or suffer other symptoms when they eat dairy products like milk, yogurt, cheese or creamy sauces. If you think you may be lactose intolerant, it may prove beneficial to skip diary for a couple of days before your event.
Gluten intolerance is also on the rise. While Celiac Disease – an autoimmune condition that manifests as an allergy to gluten – only affects about 1% of the human population, it’s estimated that anywhere from 6-13% of people have non-Celiac gluten sensitivity. Gluten is in foods that contain wheat, barley, malt, rye and some varieties of oats. So, if you think you might be sensitive to gluten, consider eliminating these foods for a couple of days to reduce bloating.
Egg allergies can also present as abdominal pain and bloating. If you think you may have an egg allergy, consult with you doctor.
Pick Clothes that Slim Your Stomach
If you have a night or two you can try the tips above to decrease bloating, but if it’s the day-of, you’re best bet is to dress in flattering clothes that slim your stomach.
- Pay attention to fabrics. Shy away from polyester, lycra, spandex or anything really stretchy that does nothing to disguise imperfections. Instead, opt for woven materials like cotton, silk or sweaters that help conceal any trouble areas.
- Go for wrap tops/dresses. This classic style helps show off your best areas, while creating waist and covering your tummy. The asymmetrical look also draws attention away from your midsection.
- Choose printed tops and dark bottoms. Look for blouses or shirts with small patterns or vertical details. Pair this with dark, solid bottoms for a maximum slimming effect.
Lose Belly Fat Long-Term
Did you know that carrying more abdominal fat is associated with higher rates of chronic diseases like heart disease, type 2 diabetes and hypertension? This is because, unlike fat that accumulates on your hips, butt or arms, deep belly fat presses on your organs. If there’s too much fat in this area it can stress all of the differnet organ systems. So, healthwise, it’s an admirable goal to work on losing belly fat long-term! Check out these tips to start shedding belly fat permenantly.
Regular exercise helps you lose belly fat. In fact, it helps you lose fat overall, which is the ultimate key to losing belly fat. Experts recommend 150 minutes of moderate exercise, or 75 minutes of vigorous acitiviy, each week. What does that mean? Moderate exercise encompasses activites like walking, riding a bike, playing volleyball or raking leaves. 150 minutes means about half an hour of activity each weeknight before or after work. If you’re short on time or want some more activity, you get the same health benefits from doing half as much (75 minutes) of vigorous activities like running, rowing or singles tennis. The more weight you lose overall, the more belly fat you’ll lose.
Contrary to popular belief, doing crunches won’t actually flatten your tummy. Ab exercises will help you strengthen and define your midsection, but they won’t magically eliminate belly fat.
Eat a healthy, moderate diet is key to weight loss. As the old adage says, “You can’t outrun your fork”. There aren’t any magic foods that will miracualously make your stomach flat, but belly fat is usually one of the first to go with overall weight loss. So, focus on staying within your calorie goals and filling-up on healthy foods.
As we mentioned above, fiber is your best friend when it comes to sustainable weight loss. Foods like whole grains, cruciferous vegetables and beans give your digestive system something to work on and keep you full longer. This is partially because of slower digestion, and partially because of the resultant levelling of your blood sugar. Either way, research shows: more fiber, more weight loss.
Alcohol is the enemy if you’re hoping to lose belly fat. Alcohol contains lots of empty calories – 7 kcal/g to be exact – that can’t be used for anything productive in your body. So, any excess calories you consume as alcohol go straight to storage, and often in your midsection. If you’re looking for ways to cut calories and slim down, skipping the alcohol is a great place to start.
Finally, chilling out is a surprisingly important step in losing weight, getting healthy and burning belly fat. Studies show that getting the right amount of sleep 6-8 hours a night helps us avoid unwanted visceral (belly) fat gain. The sweet spot is about 6-8 hours per night. Too much or too little sleep seems to increase cravings for unhealthy foods and hider impluse control that helps us avoid munching on all those less-than-healthy snacks.
Stress hormones also contribute to weight gain. People that are constantly stressed have higher levels of a stress hormone called cortisol. Too much cortisol can lead to excess fat storage and make it harder to reach our weight loss goals. That’s why wellness experts recommend activies like meditation, yoga and journaling to help decompress. So, if you’re looking for how to lose belly fat, sleeping more and stressing less may be a good place to start.
Do you agree with these tips about how to lose belly fat overnight (or long-term)? Or have any of your own? Share with us in the comments section below!