What are some exercises that can help reduce stomach fat?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
Tighten your stomach in just 7 days with this fat-busting workout:

1. Rock n' Roll Up Monday: Lie on floor with hands behind head. As you perform standard sit-up, rock your legs towards your head. Then bring legs down to the starting position. Even if you can't lift your head off the floor, roll your legs from floor to ceiling. No matter what weight you're at, you can still roll. Ten to fifteen reps.

2. Side Impact Tuesday: Stand with your shoulders in line with your hips and raise your right arm. Shift onto your left leg and rotate your right leg at the hip, turning your toes out. Crunch your right elbow and right knee together, pinching your waist. Return to start. Ten to fifteen reps.

3. Ab Tilt Wednesday: Lie on the floor with your knees bent towards your chest. Place your arms on your sides. Tighten your abdominal muscles and lift your back till your knees point upwards. Hold this position for 8-10 seconds and repeat at least 5 times.

4. Stomach Scissors Thursday: Lie on your back. Raise legs to about 90 degrees. Bend legs. Wedge your hands under your lower back. Using your abs, lower one leg to just above the floor. Then bring it back up. Then lower the other leg and return it to starting position. Twenty reps total.

5. Belly Butterfly Friday: Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the ground. Lift your legs one at a time so that your calves are at a 90-degree angle to the floor. Place one hand on your belly and the other arm at your side, palm down. Pull your stomach muscles in. Then open legs as far as you can without puffing out your belly. Then close your legs. Mimic the flapping wings of a butterfly. Ten reps.

6. The Superhero Saturday: Lying on your back, extend arms (overhead) and legs (straight out). Tighten your core and raise your arms (shoulders) and legs off the floor 6 inches. Hold for 15 seconds. Then roll over. Be sure to keep arms and legs off the ground. You should look like you're flying. Hold for 15 seconds and then roll back. That's one set. Try to repeat 4 more times.

7. Bridge Belly Buster Sunday: Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the ground and arms down at your sides. Take a deep breath pulling in your belly button. As you exhale, slowly tip up your pelvis. Your upper body should make a diagonal line from your knees to your shoulder. Hold for 5 seconds. Then take another deep breath and slowly roll your back down to the floor. Ten reps.
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Exercise of any form, resistance training or cardiovascular exercise, provides opportunity to expend energy, creating the possibility for a negative energy balance that will result in fat loss. A great method to exercise is to perform a circuit training program. Circuit training consists of several stations in which the client performs an exercise for a set amount of time or repetitions. Once time or repetitions have been achieved, then the client moves on to the next exercise in the station. Circuits can have as few as three exercises but can be as much as desired.  

Circuit style resistance training may be better suited for burning calories and thus losing fat. Recently, several studies have compared the effects of circuit resistance training to traditional cardio forms of exercise. It was shown that circuit training was just as beneficial as traditional cardiorespiratory exercise for improving and/or contributing to improved fitness levels. The following benefits of circuit training were stated:
  • Produced equal to or greater caloric expenditure for the same given time span as cardiorespiratory exercise
  • Produced greater levels of calories expended after exercise.
  • Increased overall strength.
Based upon this information, it appears that circuit training is a viable means for producing caloric expenditure, increasing strength levels, and maintaining or increasing fat-free mass while cutting down on the overall time of a complete workout.    

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.