How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat – 8 Useful Tips for 2020


It’s the start of the New Year, and you really want to know how to lose stubborn belly fat. You know have winter flub you’ve accumulated during the cold hibernation months. You look in the mirror and realize that the fat is most noticeable around the BELLY!

Well, I’m here to tell you there are DEFINITELY some very simple and EASY steps you can take to get that belly flat in no time.

Even I have struggled with losing the occasional weight gain after the holidays. I’m only human!

 Let’s Start with what You should stop doing!

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Let’s Start With What You Shouldn’t Do


how to lose belly fat fast

Number ONE Easiest way to get rid of that belly flab.

Here’s what happens when you consume sugar. Sugar is made up of half fructose, and half glucose. Fructose can ONLY be metabolized by the liver.

When the body takes in copious amounts of refined sugar (Sweets), the body is NOT able to store it as glycogen and reuse it for energy. The end result, the liver is forced to turn it into FAT!

If that wasn’t enough bad news, now parts of that sugar remain in the liver aiding in the development of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and helping your body become insulin resistant (NOT A GOOD THING). Ok, end of THIS rant.

How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat Tip 2: Forget About Abdominal Exercises!

Do you really believe all those fitness models got a six-pack from doing ab exercises? They definitely DID NOT!

 No matter how much time you devote to exercising those muscles, you still have a layer of fat covering them up! 

This is not to say that strength training (ab exercises) doesn’t play a role in fat loss, but this should in no way be your main objective. Here are some fun facts about strength training you probably didn’t know. People generally overestimate how many calories they burn during a workout. Studies have shown people tend to eat two or three times what they have actually burned during exercise. (source)

As a result of these people trying to build muscle and lose body fat, they are actually shooting themselves in the foot by overeating. Now they are going to end up storing more body fat!

 How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat Tip 3: Avoid Alcoholhow to lose stubborn belly fat

 This may seem like a no-brainer, ESPECIALLY if your end goal to is wanting to know how to lose belly fat fast.

 Unfortunately, alcohol is even WORSE than sugar regarding weight loss and its effects on the liver.

Problem #1. Alcohol is nothing but empty calories

Let’s take a look at calories from alcohol.

If you were to consume just one 12 oz light beer, you are consuming roughly 155 calories. Make that a 5 oz glass of red wine, this equates to about 125 calories. Change this to only 1 shot (1.5 oz) of vodka, and you’re getting about 97 calories. I don’t know about you, but I’m usually not drinking shots all night. More often than not, I’m like most people, either drinking a mixed drink (even more calories) or a beer.

Problem #2. Alcohol is used as the primary source for energy

Why is this bad? Well, when alcohol is consumed, it’s burned up first. This means that your body uses NOTHING else but alcohol for fuel. This includes lipids from fat and glucose from carbohydrates.

What ends up happening? Because your body is using alcohol as it’s main source for energy, all that excess glucose and lipids (carbs and fats) end up being stored as belly fat!

In fact, one particular study was done on what happened after an individual drank 1 shot of vodka. The results were shocking. This individual’s whole-body lipid oxidation (how much fat your body is burning for energy) dropped by 73%!

To explain this a little more clearly, this means that if you eat ANYTHING when consuming alcohol, your chances of storing body fat increases by 73%!

This is because when the alcohol is broken down by the liver, it is then quickly converted into acetate. Once high levels of acetate are readily available to the body, your body’s ability to burn body fat takes a giant halt. (source)

Problem #3. Alcohol Negatively Affects Your Liver

As we all know, the liver’s primary function is to act as filter foreign substances that enter your body, including drugs and alcohol.

This is not the only role of the liver, it also is involved in metabolizing fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. If you consume alcohol TOO MUCH, this can lead to alcoholic fatty liver. This condition is detrimental to your liver, and can negatively affect the way your body metabolizes and stores carbohydrates and fats.

Problem #4. Alcohol May Cause You To Gain Belly Fat From Poor Eating

Ever hear of the “beer munchies?”

Unfortunately, most people aren’t craving celery sticks and a quinoa salad after consuming a few drinks. I’m sure you remember what we discussed earlier about your body’s metabolism taking a halt.

Now that your metabolism is at an all-time low, this, of course, is the perfect time to consume a bunch of fatty greasy foods, right?


The end result, more body fat storage usually in the abdominal region.

Problem #5. Leads To Poor Sleep.

Studies have shown that alcohol can lead to increased periods of wakefulness during periods of sleep. (source)

As a result of sleep deprivation, this can cause an imbalance in some important weight loss hormones. (source)

If you ABSOLUTELY MUST DRINK Alcohol, then your best option is going to something like a Vodka Water/Soda Water. (It will only hinder your goals and make it take LONGER).

Really try to limit your alcohol consumption to sparingly.

 How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat Tip 4: Stop Stressing!

how to lose stubborn belly fat

High Levels of Cortisol have been linked to excessive fat gain, especially around the belly.

Don’t get me wrong, we need cortisol to survive. Cortisol is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands and has been given the name “stress hormone” due to it being produced when the body is put under stress. 

The problem is, when your body produces excess amounts of cortisol in the body, it can lead to weight gain, primarily in the belly region.

Because cortisol can affect other hormones, stress tends to drive people to overeat. As I mentioned before, those extra calories that turn into fat are not being evenly distributed throughout the body. Instead, that extra fat is being primarily stored in the abdominal region. (1)(2)

One study was done by investigating the relationship between waist-to-hip ratio and levels of cortisol in the body. The study was designed to put women with larger vs smaller W-T-H ratio under a stressful session for 60 minutes to see how their bodies respond. The study’s findings showed that the women with a larger W-T-H ratio had a significantly higher release of cortisol when put under stress. (source)

Ok, we get it, cortisol (stress) can potentially make you gain belly fat!

Unfortunately, this isn’t the only thing you should be worried about if you have too much stress. Here are some other lovely side effects you get when there is an overabundance of cortisol in your system:

Exhaustion: Can interfere with the daily cycles of other hormones and potentially disrupt sleep patterns making you feel tired (1)(2)

Chronic conditions: This includes type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis, and high blood pressure (source).

Infections: Weakens your immune system, making your more susceptible to infection (source).

Impaired brain activity: Stress (cortisol) interferes with memory, leading to mental cloudiness, or better know as “brain fog” (source).

What you should take away from this is you need to CALM DOWN! 

Learn how to relax.

My suggestion to you, try deep breathing, yoga, and listening to some relaxing music. Studies have shown that ALL OF THESE can decrease cortisol (1)(2)(3).


Here’s what you should start doing


How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat Tip 5: Eat Cleaner

What do I mean by Clean-Up?

Let’s cover this in a little more detail. You want to get all the appropriate macronutrients in. What are macronutrients you ask? Macronutrients, or better known as “macros,” are the nutrients you want that come from proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. 

How To Lose Belly Fat Naturally

1. Proteinhow to lose belly fat fast

You want to make sure you are getting your protein from lean protein sources. This doesn’t mean fried chicken, fatty burgers, and fatty steaks. Yes, they all taste great, but they are NOT ideal for shedding belly fat! Here is a list of the lean protein sources you want to stick to:

You want to make sure you are consuming lean protein with EVERY MEAL! Next, we will focus on…

2. Carbohydrates

There is a lot of information out there about what is considered healthy carbohydrates, and what is not. Generally, I can tell you from personal experience that there really aren’t too many healthy grains out there to choose from. Regardless, here is a list of nutrient-dense complex carbohydrates:

Note: If there is a food that’s not listed here, there’s probably a good reason for that!

  • Sweet Potatoes
  • Yams
  • Brown Rice
  • Legumes
  • Chia Seeds
  • Wild Rice
  • Oats

Remember that you should be consuming a good serving of complex carbohydrates with most of your meals. If you are not sure how much to consume, I will cover that shortly. Now to move onto the other carbohydrate sources, and we will begin with…

3. Vegetableshow to lose stubborn belly fat

Vegetables are healthy, so as long you are eating them, that’s all that matters, right?

Wrong again!

Believe it or not, a lot of vegetables are starchier than others, and even some vegetables are higher in sugar.

For example, the sugar content in a green bell pepper is significantly lower compared to let’s say a red or yellow bell pepper. 100 grams (1/2 cup) of a red bell pepper has 31 calories and 4.2 grams of sugar. Compare this to a green bell pepper only having 15-20 calories and 1.6 grams of sugar. 

Not all vegetables are created equal!

Here is a list of non-starchy and leafy green veggies you should stick to:

  • Spinach
  • Kale
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Green Bell Peppers
  • Asparagus
  • Bok Choy
  • Onions
  • Celery
  • Romaine Lettuce
  • Artichoke
  • Arugula
  • Leek
  • Sauerkraut
  • Green Beans
  • Spaghetti Squash

For your vegetable intake, you want anywhere from 2.5 -3 servings of vegetables per day! Not sure what that looks like, hold a fist in front of you. One fist-full is considered 1 serving (assuming you’re an adult).

Alright, time to move on to the last carbohydrate…

4. Fruithow to lose belly fat fast

One topic I did forget to mention, if you like juicing, I’m all for it. If you are going to make the occasional “juice,” make sure you are doing it with vegetables ONLY.

Why do you ask? Fruits are naturally high is SUGAR, and without the fiber there to help you slowly metabolize the fruit, you going to wreak HAVOC on your body. Just remember to eat your fruits and juice your vegetables. Alright, enough with my rant there, let’s get back to the fruits you should be incorporating:

  • Apples
  • Strawberries
  • Blueberries
  • Raspberries
  • Blackberries
  • Kiwi
  • Banana
  • Watermelon
  • Grapes
  • Grapefruit

I previously mentioned that fruits are high in sugar. Even though fruit is healthy for you when you are eating them whole, you still can’t have TOO much. No more than 1-2 serving of fruit per day!

Last, but not least…

5. Fats

how to lose belly fat fast

Contrary to what you may have been told, fats DO NOT make you fat. As long as you are consuming the RIGHT kinds of fats, they can actually promote weight loss. Here is a list of all the Fats you want to start consuming daily:

  • Avocado
  • Olive Oil
  • Coconut Oil
  • Almonds
  • Peanuts
  • Natural Almond Butter
  • Natural Peanut Butter
  • Fish Oil
  • Flaxseed Oil

Just like everything else we’ve discussed, you have to make sure you are not overdoing it with the fats (unless you following the keto diet). How much do I need? Let’s make this as simple as possible, and instead of me guessing how much I think you need (there is no one solution that works for everyone), use this macro-calculator to help estimate how much of each nutrient you should be consuming each day!

Now that you know what to consume start applying it!

Also, make sure when you start incorporating this, that you don’t break down and stress eat the sweets! 

We’ve all done this before, but really try to control this, because stress eating just leads to more stress eating. Sugar is highly addictive because of the fructose.

When you consume fructose, the body doesn’t stimulate insulin secretion.

Insulin is the hormone your pancreas secretes to drive GLUCOSE (aka carbohydrates) into cells. But, insulin also sends a signal to the brain letting you know you are full. If your body doesn’t send out insulin, there is no way to know if you’re are full or not (hence why you keep eating more and more).

 How To Lose Belly Fat Quickly Tip 6: Start Exercisinghow to lose stubborn belly fat

I’ve seen it too many times where the ONLY THING women want to do is cardio. You’ll lose weight that way, but you WILL NOT get toned at all!

Ever see the super skinny girl with tiny legs, no butt, and flabby arms? That’s what happens when you ONLY DO CARDIO!

If you want to know how to lose stubborn belly fat, then remember that strength training is ESSENTIAL for making this happen.

Here are some of the initial benefits you will see from incorporating strength training.

  1. Increase in muscle mass (hypertrophy)
  2. Increased strength 
  3. improved body composition (source)
  4. Stronger bones and joints
  5. A decrease in body fat (source)
  6. Afterburn (burning calories even after the exercise is finished) for up to two hours (source).

To further prove my point that cardio shouldn’t be your only form of exercise, one study showed that individuals decreased 35% more body fat when combining strength training and diet compared to those who followed a diet with cardio. (source)

So here is where you should start:

  • Incorporate High-Intensity Fat-Burning Exercising 1-2 times per week (20-30 mins). Circuit Training works incredibly well!
  • The other days (Should be exercising no less than 4 times a week) Should be a little less intense but should also be a little bit longer (30-40 mins).
  • Cardio should be incorporated 3-4 times per week along with the Strength Training.

 How To Lose Belly Fat Quickly Tip 7: Sleep Morehow to lose stubborn belly fat

This has been pounded in my brain over and over again. Yet, even I sometimes fall short on this one. I, however, make this one of my main priorities.

I get that having a crazy work schedule can sometimes make it difficult to get the right amount of sleep, but it’s not an excuse. Here’s why it is important to get the right amount of sleep. 

1. Risk Factor For Gaining Weight

Poor sleep has been proven time and again to being linked to a higher body mass index and weight gain. (source)

One particular study found that shorter sleep cycles increased the likelihood of obesity in children by 89% and 55% in adults. (source)

2. Poor Sleep Increases Appetite

Studies have shown that people who are not getting enough sleep tend to have an increase in appetite. (1)(2)

This is because there are two key weight loss hormones being affected by this lack of sleep. These hormones are leptin and ghrelin

Ghrelin is a hormone that gets released in the stomach and signals hunger in the brain. When you are hungry, these levels are higher. After you eat, these hormone levels are significantly reduced. 

The second hormone leptin is actually released from fat cells. It lowers hunger levels and lets the brain know your body is full. 

When you don’t get proper rest, your body makes less leptin and more ghrelin. You end up being more hungry wanting to eat more. (source)

Also, lack of sleep is a large contributor to higher levels of Cortisol in the body. (source)

Which in turn makes us want to snack on sugary refined processed foods.

The general take away from all of this, You want to get anywhere from 7.5-9 hours of sleep EVERY NIGHT! (At least this much on days you’ve exercised)

This is obviously going to vary from person to person, as well as the quality of the sleep. Regardless, you now know how important sleep is and how its even more important if your main goal is eliminating belly fat.


How To Lose Stubborn Belly Fat Tip 8: Drink More Water

how to lose stubborn belly fat

This is EXTREMELY important! The reason being is because of how many people have mistaken hunger for thirst. 

1. Fat Burning Potential

Want to know how to lose belly fat naturally?

An interesting fact about water you probably didn’t know is it has fat-burning potential!


Yes, you heard me correctly. This is because of its resting energy expenditure, also known as burning calories at rest (source). One study showed that adults who consumed cold drinking water had a 24-30% increase in their resting energy expenditure as early as 10 minutes after drinking one glass.

This can last up to one hour or more! (1),(2)

This is probably one of the best ways What you should take away from this is water can be beneficial in helping you lose stubborn belly fat.

In addition to helping you increase your energy expenditure, water can also..

2. Helps Curb Your Appetite

One study following a group of middle-aged overweight and obese individuals who drank water before each meal lost 44% more weight compared to the group that did not drink more H20. (source)

This goes hand in hand with curbing your appetite, but drinking more water has been linked to reduced calorie intake and a lower risk of gaining weight.

You see, water has 0 calories. If you begin replacing soda and fruit drinks with water, you’ve already lowered your calorie intake.

So how much water should I drink? Even though the general guidelines recommend eight 8 oz glasses (64 0z) of water per day, this varies from person to person. 

If you are physically more active at work than let’s say the sedentary person sitting at a desk, you are most likely going to need MUCH more than this recommendation. 

Also, if you are physically active at the gym, you are also going to need more water than this as well. 

Knowing how to lose stubborn belly fat can be quite challenging, even when you are following the correct steps. This is why it is CRUCIAL you have an excellent fitness and diet plan in place.

If you enjoyed this article and want to know how to lose stubborn belly fat, our 28-Day Weight Loss Magic Program is a great place to start!

People lose an average of 10-28 pounds in just 28 days! If you are ready to change your life around, this is your BEST OPTION.

We teach you how to tackle eating healthy, how to lose belly fat naturally, and how to use exercise correctly so that it sticks with you before and long after you finish the program.

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Comments 10

    1. Post

      Hey Kayla, I’m sorry to hear that. Have you tried doing a carbohydrate detox? Also, when trying to make changes, I recommend making little changes in the beginning. It’s a lot easier to start small and work your way up. Completely changing your lifestyle habits is not only going to be a lot more stressful, but you’re also a lot more likely to fall back into old habits and potentially give up. Take one day at a time. You can do it Kayla!

  1. i have belly and back fat. Im not a heavy set woman. Im 5’6 weigh 147…no matter what i do, i stay at that weight. I want it to go away. My issue is that i have a zero appitite. Im never hungry. I can go 2 to 3 days without eating and yet I remain the same weight.

    1. Post

      Hey Brandy, I’m sorry to hear about your struggle. I would HIGHLY recommend finding a way to start eating more often, because it is EXTREMELY unhealthy to go that long without eating. If you skip eating for that long of a duration, you will actually make your body slow down and eat away at muscle. Your body will hold onto the FAT for as long as possible and favor eating your muscles first. This is because the more muscle you have on your body, the more energy your body requires. Having muscle on your body is a good thing, you do not want to lose muscle. If you need more information on what foods you should be incorporating and the proper way to fast, check out these two articles. Weight Loss In Seven Easy Steps, Intermittent Fasting For Beginners. If you need more help, our Fat Loss Challenge has all the steps you need to succeed. Finally, I am not a doctor Brandy. If you are still having trouble with your appetite, I strongly encourage you to go see a doctor. It could be an underlying issue. I struggled with hypothyroidism for a couple of years before I went a saw a doctor. I wouldn’t have known unless I got checked out. Good Luck Brandy!

  2. I found this article on point. Have tried this ritual for 90 days and have lost 4 inches off my waist. Down to the last 2 inches needed to get the abs desired but it’s getting harder. I think another 60 days should get me to my goal.

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