Written by Kris Gunnars
Losing abdominal fat, or belly fat, is a common weight loss goal.
Abdominal fat is a particularly harmful type. Research suggests strong links with diseases like type 2 diabetes and heart disease (1Trusted Source).
For this reason, losing this fat can have significant benefits for your health and well-being.
You can measure your abdominal fat by measuring the circumference around your waist with a tape measure. Measures of above 40 inches (102 cm) in men and 35 inches (88 cm) in women are known as abdominal obesity (2).
Certain weight loss strategies can target the fat in the belly area more than other areas of the body.
Here are 6 evidence-based ways to lose belly fat.
Foods with added sugars are bad for your health. Eating a lot of these types of food can cause weight gain.
Studies show that added sugar has uniquely harmful effects on metabolic health (3Trusted Source).
Some believe that this is the main process behind sugar’s harmful effects on health. It increases abdominal fat and liver fat, which leads to insulin resistance and various metabolic problems (7Trusted Source).
Liquid sugar is worse in this regard. The brain doesn’t seem to register liquid calories in the same way as solid calories, so when you drink sugar-sweetened beverages, you end up eating more total calories (8Trusted Source, 9Trusted Source).
A study observed that children were 60% more likely to develop obesity with each additional daily serving of sugar-sweetened beverages (10).
Try minimizing the amount of sugar in your diet and consider completely eliminating sugary drinks. This includes sugar-sweetened beverages, sugary sodas, fruit juices, and various high sugar sports drinks.
Read the labels to make sure products do not contain refined sugars. Even foods marketed as health foods can contain significant amounts of sugar.
Keep in mind that none of this applies to whole fruit, which are extremely healthy and have plenty of fiber that mitigates the negative effects of fructose.