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8 Eye-Opening Tips To Shake Off Your Stubborn Belly Fat

8 Eye-Opening Tips To Shake Off Your Stubborn Belly Fat

With the holidays just around the corner, now is the time to think about what you’ll do with that plate of turkey and mac n’ cheese — will you be stuffed like a turkey or will you be svelte for the new year?

There are many reasons why the holidays are a grand time. They are a time in which to be happy — you are spending time with family, friends, and loved ones and exchanging stories and gifts. This is also the time of fatty foods and “soul” food cooking that may taste amazing (like seriously amazing), but can be harmful to your health and your happiness.

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Here are 8 tips to help you lose those that stubborn belly fat and keep it off during the holidays!

1. Drink Plenty Of Water

Yes, it’s a rule as old as time, or at least as old as whenever the USDA created those guidelines. Drinking at least eight 8-oz glasses of water a day will help you not only maintain your weight but aid in weight loss. You’ll also start to notice changes in your skin and nail health. It promotes an overall healthy body and keeps your skin glowing, your waist slimmer, and your hair shinier!

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2. Don’t Go Back For That Second Helping

During the holidays, it is normal for us all to go back to the kitchen for second, sometimes even third, helpings, but this is not good. If you’re trying to stay slim and not feel like your zipper on your pants is about to bust open, it is important to avoid over-indulging in holiday foods. There is nothing wrong with having a slice of grandma’s famous sweet potato pie, but going back for the whole pie should be avoided!

3. Create A Plan

Everything you do in your life requires some plan of attack or some idea of how you want to achieve it. This is very true for losing weight and getting rid of belly fat — you must create a plan of action on how you want to drop those extra pounds. It is as simple as taking time one afternoon and writing down what your goals are for weight loss, whether it’s to fit in that new dress for Christmas or just to be beach ready for the Spring!

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4. Do More Cardio Exercises

Cardio and other exercises lead to smaller waistlines, but also happier attitudes. When you exercise, you release endorphins that aid in you feeling happier, and nothing brings about more happiness than seeing the results of your hard work. You know your body better than anyone, and you know what exercises are more challenging for you, so it is important to always consult a doctor or medical professional before engaging in rigorous activity.

5. Start Off Slow

Losing weight, especially belly fat, can take time — nothing is ever done in a few weeks. Those fad diets and juice fasts will help you to lose weight, but usually you’re losing muscle and the results don’t last. In order to lose belly fat and keep it off, you must change your habits and your routine and make up in your mind that you are ready to be healthier. Losing belly fat must start with you taking it slow and changing a few habits, then incorporating exercise and portion control.

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6. Eat More Protein And Less Sugar (You Can Still Eat!)

When dropping belly fat, it is important to not completely stop eating and to starve yourself — that is detrimental to not only your weight loss but your overall health! Eat more foods that are high in protein, such as chicken, eggs, salmon, and lamb. Eat less foods that are high in sugar and fat, such as pies, cake, ice cream, cookies, and the like. Many may think it is hard to eat less sugars due to the holidays. However, sweet potatoes and yams, not cooked in all that extra butter and sugar, are healthier and are still a sweet alternative to indulging in holiday sweets.

7. Eat More Fiber (Yes, Jaime Lee Curtis Was Right)

Eating more fiber not only helps to regulate your digestive system but it aids in losing belly fat. All those commercials were right, incorporating more fiber into your diet will help you to feel better and less bloated.

8. Keep A Journal

It is important to document your weight loss and to keep track of what you’re eating and your weight loss goals. There is nothing wrong with having a journal at any age, not only can you express your frustrations but you can also have a physical representation of your goals and you can check them off each time you achieve them. So, this holiday when your family asks why you’re writing in that notebook, tell them that you’re trying to make it into the new year with a slimmer waistline!

Featured photo credit: Viktor Hanacek via picjumbo.com

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Michael Murphy

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Last Updated on December 9, 2019

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

5 Simple Ways to Relieve Stress Effectively

Everyone experiences mental stress at one time or another. Maybe you’re starting a new career, job, or business, or you feel incredibly overwhelmed between work, parenting, and your love life (or a lack of it). It could even be that you simply feel that you have way too much to do and not enough time to do it,  plus, on top of everything, nothing seems to be going the way it should!

Yup, we all experience mental stress from time-to-time, and that’s okay as long as you have the tools, techniques and knowledge that allow you to fully relieve it once it comes.

Here are 5 tips for relieving mental stress when it comes so you can function at your best while feeling good (and doing well) in work, love, or life:

1. Get Rationally Optimistic

Mental stress starts with your perception of your experiences. For instance, most people get stressed out when they perceive their reality as “being wrong” in some way. Essentially, they have a set idea of how things “should be” at any given moment, and when reality ends up being different (not even necessarily bad), they get stressed.

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This process is simply a result of perception and can be easily “fixed” by recognizing that although life might not always be going as YOU think it should, it’s still going as it should—for your own benefit.

In fact, once you fully recognize that everything in your life ultimately happens for your own growth, progress, and development—so you can achieve your goals and dreams—your perception works in your favor. You soon process and respond to your experience of life differently, for your advantage. That’s the essence of becoming “rationally optimistic.”

The result: no more mental stress.

2. Unplug

Just like you might need to unplug your computer when it starts acting all crazy, you should also “unplug” your mind.

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How on earth do you unplug your mind? Simple: just meditate.

It isn’t nearly difficult or complicated as some people think, so, if you don’t already meditate, give it a try. Whether you meditate for 5 minutes, 30 minutes, or 2 hours, this is a surefire way to reduce mental stress.

Meditation has been scientifically proven to relax your body (resulting in less mental stress), while also reducing anxiety and high blood pressure.

3. Easy on the Caffeine

Yes, we know, we know—everyone loves a nice java buzz, and that’s okay, but there’s a fine line between a small caffeine pick-me-up and a racing heart and mind that throws you into a frenzy of mental stress.

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Try giving up caffeine for a while and see how you feel. And, if that’s completely out of the question for you, at least try to minimize it. You might find that lots of your mental stress mysteriously “disappears” as your caffeine intake goes down.

4. Attack Mental Stress Via the Back Door

That’s right: your body and mind are part of the whole being, and are constantly influencing and affecting each other. If you’re experiencing a lot of mental stress, try to reduce it by calming your body down—a calm body equals a calmer mind.

How do you calm your body down and reduce physical stress? A  great way to reduce physical stress (thereby reducing mental stress) is to take natural supplements that are proven to reduce stress and anxiety while lifting your mood. Three good ones to look into are kava-kava, St John’s wort, and rhodiola rosea:

  • Kava-kava is a natural plant known to have mild sedative properties, and you should be able to find it at your natural health food store or vitamin store. It’s available in capsules or liquid extract form.
  • St John’s wort is a natural flower used to treat depression. Again, it’s found at your local health store in capsules or liquid. Because it uplifts mood (enabling you to see the brighter side of all experiences) it helps relieve mental stress as well.
  • Rhodiola rosea is a natural plant shown to reduce stress and uplift mood, and Russian athletes have been using it forever. Like the other two supplements mentioned, rhodiola rosea can be found at your natural health store in capsule or liquid form.

While these supplements are all natural and can be very helpful for most people, always check with your health care provider first as they can cause side-effects depending on your current health situation etc.

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5. Good Old-Fashioned Exercise

This tip has been around forever because it works. Nothing relieves mental stress like running, kickboxing—you name it. Anything super-physical will wipe out most of your mental stresses once the exercise endorphins (happy chemicals) are released into your brain.

The result: mental stress will be gone!

So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed or just plain stressed, try using some of the above tips. You can even print this out or save it to refer to regularly.

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Featured photo credit: Radu Florin via unsplash.com

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