If you’re struggling to lose belly after 50, you’re not alone. Losing fat becomes harder in your 50s than it was in your 20s and 30s. While you may feel like you no longer have control over weight and belly fat—you do!
While there are some biological factors that can make it harder to lose belly fat after 50, much of what you can do can make a big difference.
Let’s start with some biological factors that are giving you the uphill battle with belly fat.
As you age, your metabolism starts to slow down— this means your body becomes less efficient and needs fewer calories to sustain itself.
This could be one of the reasons for the expanding waistline you’ve been noticing.
A lot of factors influence your metabolism— your age, gender, hormonal, body size, and lifestyle.
While we can’t influence your age and gender, we can change our lifestyle.
A few lifestyle changes are enough to boost your metabolism and start shrinking your waistline.
Living a healthy and active lifestyle can help your body become more metabolically active and start burning more fat.
How To Lose Your Gut After 50
In this article, I’ll share 5 tips that help you lose gut after 50.
1. Eat Whole Foods
To lose your gut, the first place to check is your diet. For any type of weight loss whether you are looking to lose fat or weight, you need to eat fewer calories than you use.
You need the calorie deficit to lose any weight or fat.
But instead of focusing on calories and how much you eat, shift your focus to what you eat instead.
Whole foods like veggies, fruits, beans, and mushrooms are low in calories but rich in nutrients.
They are packed with vitamins and minerals you need in your 50s and add to healthy aging.
A nutrient like fiber keeps you full longer and helps you prevent hunger between meals.
The easiest goal you can implement is to fill half of your plate with whole foods. If you love carbs, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, cauliflower rice, and zucchini noodles are great as a sub for rice and grains.
Fruits like oranges, apples, and grapefruits are perfect for breakfast and they are easy to take on the go.
Fill a quarter of your plate with lean protein like fish, chicken, turkey, and eggs. You need protein to maintain your lean muscles as well as for the health of your nails, hair, and skin.
The last quarter of your plate should be some healthy fats like nuts and avocado and some grains.
Eat like this, you’ll never have to intentionally go on a diet and count calories. You will also experience more satiety and naturally snack less throughout the day.
2. Don’t Drink Calories
It’s easy to focus on calories from food and completely forget to count calories from their drinks.
Too many times, drinks people enjoy throughout the day actually come with more calories than meals they eat.
For example, a chocolate mocha Frappuccino from Starbucks can fill over 500 calories per cup. In comparison, their chicken and hummus protein box only come with 300 calories.
While the high-calorie drink won’t fill your stomach, the hummus box will keep you full for hours.
If you normally pick up sugary drinks, the easiest thing you can do for your gut fat is to skip your drinks.
You can also replace them with something healthier like these smoothies packed with fruits, nuts, and oats.
These healthy smoothies come with fewer calories and help you feel full.
When it comes to drinks, simply making smarter choices can speed up your weight loss even in the 50s.
3. Ditch Your Meal Schedule
Oftentimes, we eat not because we are hungry, but because we are conditioned to eat at a certain time.
You may have eaten a big breakfast at 10 am and before you finish digesting the big meal, you may be prompted to eat lunch at noon.
That’s only because it’s the meal schedule you’ve been following for years.
Instead of the time dictating when to eat and how much to eat, try eating only when you feel hungry.
It’s also important to stop eating when you are about 80% full not when the plate is finished or you feel over 100% full.
This simple switch in the mindset on when you eat can be a game-changer.
4. Switch Up Workout Routines
If you have one workout routine you like to keep going back to, it’s time to switch up your routines to lose your gut.
Your body is efficient. When you perform the same activity repeatedly, your body will learn to do it with less energy.
It’s important to switch up your workouts every so often to keep challenging your muscles and target different areas of your body.
Strength training is effective in burning up an extra layer of fat and building lean muscles, which will help speed up your metabolism.
Because muscles are metabolically more active than fat, having more means you set yourself up for effective fat burning in and out of the gym.
Building strength as you age is also key to maintaining mobility, flexibility, and range of motion. It’s essential for independent living and better quality of life.
For strength training, incorporate some functional leg workouts like squats, lunges, and step-ups. They help you carry out everyday physical activities better and keep your body flexible.
Your legs are also composed of larger muscle groups. Engaging them will also lead to burning more fat and contributing to more fat loss throughout the body including your gut.
5. Intermittent Fasting
The word ‘fasting’ throws off many people, and I get it.
Nobody likes the idea of fasting and going without food for a long stretch of your day. Thankfully, intermittent fasting isn’t about fasting all day. Rather, it’s about being mindful of when to eat and giving a portion of your day to digest and empty your stomach.
You may start with a 10-hour fast where you complete your meal 2 hours before your bedtime and begin eating 1 hour after your 7-hour sleep.
It’s an eating pattern that methodically gives your body to digest the food, use up the stored energy, and act on an empty stomach a bit.
It’s proven effective in burning fat, losing weight, and reducing belly fat. There are numerous patterns to intermittent fasting.
It’s not for everyone, but if this works out for you, you can look to see what fasting schedule fits you the best.