Are There Foods that Help Burn Abdominal Fat?

There are many myths spreading around about losing fat around the belly. Are there foods that can help you to burn abdominal fat?
Are There Foods that Help Burn Abdominal Fat?

Last update: 24 April, 2020

Many people are concerned about losing abdominal fat because they either want to define their ab muscles or reduce their belly size. In order to achieve this, they consume certain foods that are marketed as being beneficial for burning abdominal fat. However, there isn’t any scientific evidence to support these claims. So, are there actually foods that could help burn abdominal fat?

You can’t target fat loss in certain areas of your body as you’ll lose fat evenly from your whole body. In the same way that doing abdominal crunches won’t burn abdominal fat, there are no foods that can help you lose fat specifically around your midsection. In fact, there are no foods that have the power to shed fat in general either!

The fat loss process

The process of losing fat is thanks to a very simple mathematical formula: eating fewer calories than you burn. This principle, based on the laws of thermodynamics, applies to any individual and works for both losing and gaining weight.

No matter the illnesses, how full you feel, or genetics, if the energy requirements are greater than the intakes, weight loss will occur. As a result, weight loss also entails muscle depletion and a reduction of fatty tissue.

Fortunately, burning muscle is very limited when you’re following a good diet. Even if you’re fasting, your body will initially burn some protein but this process will slow down as the hours pass.

For energy production, your body actually burns more fatty tissue than any other kind of tissue. In this way, fatty acids exit the adipocytes and travel to the liver where they are transformed into a useful energy substrate: glucose.

Fat tissue loss never occurs in a specific area

The body isn’t able to select the location of the adipocytes from which it’ll remove fatty acids. Thus, the areas where you lose fat mostly depend on your genetics.

Girl makes measurements to assess fat loss burn abdominal fat

People who have a tendency to store fat more evenly will find that weight loss occurs more evenly on their bodies. However, those individuals who are more likely to store fat in a certain area will see a greater reduction of fat compared in this area compared to the rest of the body.

However, there’s no food that can accelerate this fat loss process. Although there are some substances that seem to stimulate the use of fatty acids for energy production, such as caffeine, this effect isn’t as significant as it may seem and is just a little bit of help.

Still, there are some strategies to make achieving a caloric deficit less tedious. It’s to do with eating more foods rich in fiber, and therefore, with greater power of keeping you feeling full.

Eating fiber produces an increase in the fecal bolus and stomach distension (expansion of the stomach) without additional caloric intake. Additionally, it stimulates the selective growth of bacteria in the colon that can intervene in the absorption of nutrients.

For these reasons, a high fiber intake reduces appetite and improves the health of the digestive tract. As a result, this reduces the risk of developing complex diseases and improves glycemic control. This is an interesting calorie strategy. You can increase the amount of food in your diet without increasing its caloric density.

Exercise can help you burn abdominal fat

The best way to eliminate fat, whether it’s mainly in a specific area or not, is the regular practice of exercise. This will contribute to increasing caloric expenditure and generating that necessary thermodynamic deficit. In addition, it’ll help increase your muscle tone. As a result, your body will have greater energy needs, even in a state of rest.

However, reducing fat isn’t the only benefit of doing exercise. There’s evidence that getting regular exercise can help prevent or reduce the risk for the onset of many diseases, including cardiovascular diseases.

A couple does aerobic exercise for abdominal fat loss burn abdominal fat

On the other hand, physical exercise is a good ally against obesity and metabolic syndrome. Ultimately, and as if all this weren’t enough, it keeps the body working more efficiently and increases daily performance.

Conclusion: is it possible to lose only abdominal fat?

Fat loss is a process derived from ingesting fewer calories than the body can burn off. However, it cannot be done in a specific area. That being said, making sure you get enough exercise can help you burn fat and lose it more evenly all over your body.

Finally, it’s true that there are some substances that can slightly speed up this process. However, there are no foods that cause substantial weight loss.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

  • 1 – Painter SL., Ahmed R., Hill JO., Kushner RF., Lindquist R., Brunning S., Margulies A., What matters in weight loss? An in-Depth analysis of self-monitoring. J Med Internet Res, 2017.
  • 2 – Hunter GR., Fisher G., Neumeier WH., Carter SJ., Plaisance EP., Exercise training and energy expenditure following weight loss. Med Sci Sports Exerc, 2015. 47 (9): 1950-7.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.