By Matt Kollat
If you would like to know how to lose weight from your hips, we have bad news and good news.
The bad news is you can’t target weight loss in a certain area of the body; you either lose weight from everywhere or nowhere.
The good news is, losing excess weight from the hips as well as the rest of your body is achievable through a combination of healthy eating and the best exercises for weight loss.
The principle of losing weight is simple, and relies on a calorie deficit - i.e. eating fewer calories than you burn throughout the day. There are different ways to go about this: you can up your activity levels and burn more calories or if you are not planning on being more active, or drop the calories by eating less. The best and most efficient way is to combine both and develop long-lasting, healthier habits.
The dangers of visceral fat
You might ask: what’s wrong with having a bit of extra fat around my torso? If you have excess fat built up around your waist or hips, that can be a sign of visceral fat which is defined by diabetes.co.uk as "body fat that is stored within the abdominal cavity and is therefore stored around a number of important internal organs such as the liver, pancreas and intestines".
Apart from the muffin top not being the best look in general, storing visceral fat can lead to insulin resistance and ultimately, type 2 diabetes. The process is not instantaneous and can also be reversed through adopting a healthy diet and working to speed up your metabolism. In this article we'll run though how to lose weight from your hips though a combination of dietary adjustments and exercises.
How to lose weight from your hips: Foods to avoid
Takeaways are most usually geared toward helping you feel full quickly, especially after a long night of drinking. To achieve this, takeaway meals are high in fast release carbs, sugar, sodium and saturated fats, none of which you need in these quantities. The pricing structure also pushes customers for larger portions than they need.
- Processed food
Food items such as sliced cheese, sausages and bacon with added water have all gone through processing and contain additives – preservatives, emulsifiers and so on – your body has to break down and get rid of. Instead of these, try introducing more fresh and whole foods in your diet.
- Fast release carbohydrates
Even if you don’t eat a lot of sugar, you can still spike insulin levels in the blood by eating food high in fast release carbs, such as pasta, white rice and flour. Instead, try swapping these out for food rich in fibre: legumes, brown rice and quinoa. As for bread, you can try sourdough as it has a lot of good properties, according to T-Nation.
How to lose weight from your hips: Foods to eat more of
- Fish and shellfish
Try including more fish and crustaceans in your diet. Crustaceans are high in protein and have no fat or carbs while many types of fish are high in ‘good fats’ which are good for your heart, your cholesterol, and your overall health. We also perceive fattier food as more flavorsome and filling, too.
- Empty lisLean meat/protein
Lean meat is high in protein, low in fat and has virtually no carbs. Food items high in protein are advantageous for many reasons: protein promotes muscle recovery, helps you feel full for longer and contains moderate amounts of calories for its weight.
Not technically food, but water is essential for wellbeing and weight loss. Drinking more water can help your body get rid of unwanted substances, speed up metabolism and even make your skin smoother. There is no reason why you shouldn’t drink more water.
The best workouts to lose weight from your hips
- HIIT (high intensity interval training_
A HIIT workout is not only great for heart health and to speed up metabolism, but ‘doing HIIT’ is also great for burning fat. A 2014 study concludes that "the data demonstrate that HIIT and continuous moderate-intensity training induce similar 24-h energy expenditure, which may explain the comparable changes in body composition reported despite lower total training volume and time commitment." You burn more fat with less exercising.
It might not be as time-efficient as HIIT workouts, but running is still an amazing way to get in shape and improve cardiovascular health. Running and other types of moderate effort training can help develop long-term habits that can positively affect your health because they take a long time. Jogging 5K might take you 45 minutes, but you will burn plenty of calories during that time and also, you won’t eat while you are out on a run. Just try not gorging yourself on snacks when you get back.
The best exercises to reduce excess fat from hips
Squats are compound exercises which means you use a range of muscles instead of just a couple when you do them. Squats also mainly target the biggest muscle in your body, the gluteus maximus, so you’ll burn plenty of calories by doing squats. As well as the glutes, by doing squats, you also strengthen the quadriceps and your core, all of which can help your posture and therefore sleep and general comfort levels.
See our guide on how to do squats for info on performing this move safely to avoid injury.
- Reverse lunges with knee drive
Similar to squats, lunges mainly target the lower part of your body and your core. Adding a knee drive to the mix – by lifting the knee up as you come back up from the lunge – you add some explosiveness to the movement and really work the core to balance the body on one leg. When doing reverse lunges, go as deep as you can comfortably and keep most of the weight on the front leg. Don’t let the knee extend forward too much and use your arm for balance. Want to work those legs extra hard? Once you've mastered how to do lunges, try adding a resistance band into the mix to really feel the burn!
Matt is T3.com's fitness and nutrition writer. In his free time, he swims, runs, cycles and tries various resistance training workouts so he can ramble about them to people who aren't really interested in fitness.
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