Burning fat can be a real challenge. Whether it is in an attempt to improve your health or to get the look you are after, burning fat and toning up may well require changes to both your exercise routine and your diet.
Luckily, there are some easy and quick ways in which you can burn fat.
Here are some of our favourites that you can start today:
Working out is the best way to burn fat. When most people think of fat loss workouts, they think of cardio, but strength training should not be overlooked.
Strength training is designed to improve strength and endurance with repeated resistance movements. It includes lifting weights as well as using your body weight for squats, push ups and planks.Studies have shown that strength training is more effective than aerobic exercise alone when it comes to fat loss.1
Eat more proteinAdding more protein to your diet can help to keep you feeling fuller for longer, which will decrease your appetite and therefore reduce your calorie intake. Some studies have shown that eating more protein also helps you to lose belly fat.2
Add more fat burning foods such as lean meat, seafood, eggs and dairy products to your diet or add a protein supplement.
If you are vegan, then good sources of plant based protein include lentils, tofu and chickpeas.
Get your eight hours of sleep a nightDid you know that a lack of sleep can contribute to an increased appetite, changes in the hormones which cause you to become hungry and a higher risk of obesity?3 Try to get at least seven hours of sleep each night. Stick to a regular bedtime, avoid screens and caffeine before bed and try some natural sleep remedies such as lavender, valerian and chamomile to help you drift off to the land of nod.
Increase your soluble fibre intakeSoluble fibre helps to absorb water and forms a gel, which in turn helps slow down food passing through your digestive system. This keeps you feeling full and so you will naturally end up eating less throughout the day.4
HIIT stands for High Intensity Interval Training and it is a type of high energy fat burning workout, which combines high intensity bursts of exercise with short periods of rest.
This keeps your heart rate up and burns more calories in a short period of time, compared to other forms of cardio – perfect if you are busy!Studies have shown that HIIT workouts can burn up to 30 per cent more calories than other types of cardio when done for the same amount of time.5 This means that you can do a HIIT workout for just 15 minutes and still see results.
You should do a combination of HIIT workouts and strength training during the week.
Beginners should try PE with Joe on YouTube where fitness guru Joe Wicks leads you through live HIIT workouts each day.
Cut down on sugar
Eating foods containing sugar increases your cravings for more sugary foods.Foods that are high in sugar are often high in calories too and they will not fill you up, meaning you will need to eat more of them to satisfy your sweet tooth.6 For a healthier option, swap sweets and chocolate for low calorie, naturally sweet foods such as dates, figs and pears or sugar free snacks.
Start your day with exerciseAccording to studies, working out first thing in the morning can help you to lose 20 per cent more fat than exercising after you have your breakfast.7 Start your day with your workout and then follow up with a protein rich breakfast such as Greek yogurt, eggs or porridge, for a fat burning start to the day. Discover the 8 exercises that will help to burn fat.
Eat more slowly
Eating too quickly can lead to overeating. Slow yourself down by “mindfully” eating and concentrating on chewing each mouthful before you swallow.You sometimes still feel hungry straight after eating, so try to wait 20 minutes before you grab more food and see if you still want to eat more.8
Reduce your portion sizes
Reducing the size of your portions will help you to consume less calories.
An easy way to do this is to eat from a smaller plate. We always feel the need to fill all the space available on our plates and so a smaller plate will help to reduce the amount of food you consume.
We do not mean to be killjoys! The occasional alcoholic treat is fine but when you consume a lot of alcohol, the calories soon start to add up.
Beer, alcopops and wine have some of the highest calorie content, so swap these for clear spirits such as gin or vodka and drink these with a diet mixer.Try to have at least a couple of days a week which are alcohol free to save extra calories on these days. Shop Weight Management
Last updated: 28 January 2021
Author: Donia Hilal, Nutritionist
Donia started her career as a freelance nutritionist, later she joined Nestle as their Market Nutritionist to help support their healthier product range, before joining the team at Holland & Barrett in January 2018. Donia has 6 years experience as a Nutritionist and also works with clients on a one to one basis to support their goals which include weight loss, prenatal and postnatal nutrition and children’s health.Donia has a special interest in; weight management, plant-based nutrition, pregnancy nutrition, special diets and disease risk reduction. Donia's LinkedIn profile