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How To Lose Belly Fat For Men? 9 Ways To Lose Belly Fat 2024


Reviewed by Elizabeth Gonzalez Cueto, MD
How To Lose Belly Fat For Men
Losing belly fat is a common goal among several men today. Photo: Thanh Pham

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If you hope to learn how to lose body fat in men, you are not alone. Losing belly or stomach fat is a common goal among several people today. 

Regardless of your overall weight, a large amount of belly fat can be risky, especially for men. According to research,[1] people with excess abdominal fat or abdominal obesity present a higher risk of developing diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Weight loss, especially in the abdomen, can not only improve your appearance but also enhance your body’s functionality and lengthen your life.

Weight loss in men is very similar to weight loss in women. An overall change in the reduction of a sedentary lifestyle and physical activity is the first step to shrinking your waistline and living a healthier life. If you want to learn easy ways to lose fat around the belly, here is a piece you must read.

Best Way To Lose Belly Fat For Men

Here are a few easy ways to lose stubborn belly fat in men.

  • Execute Exercises That Target Belly Fat
  • Consume Prebiotics And Probiotics
  • Eat A High-Fiber Diet
  • Eat More Protein
  • Lift Weights
  • Get A Good Night’s Sleep
  • Consume More Vitamin C Rich Foods
  • Reduce Sugar And Avoid Sugar-Sweetened Drinks
  • Manage Stress

How To Reduce Belly Fat & Lose Weight For Men

Here are a few easy ways to decrease belly fat in men.

Execute Exercises That Target Belly Fat

Execute Exercises That Target Belly Fat
Core workouts help you burn fat more effectively. Photo: Istvan Csak/Shutterstock

When people think about losing weight, the first thing that comes to mind is exercise. Unfortunately, doing only spot-reducing exercises like crunches or sit-ups may not help you effectively lose weight. Nutritionists and trainers advise that you do a combination of cardio, strength-building, and core workouts. These exercises target the entire body and help you burn fat more effectively.

Consume Prebiotics And Probiotics

Prebiotics and probiotics are secret weapons if you are trying to lose weight. Although it gets less attention, using prebiotics alone or in combination with probiotics is effective for weight loss. Probiotics are foods or supplements containing microorganisms consumed to maintain or improve the good bacteria in the gut. Prebiotics are dietary fibers that are taken to create a good environment for good bacteria. They are basically food for healthy bacteria in the gut. Prebiotic fiber helps your body absorb less fat and reach a healthy weight.

Eat A High-Fiber Diet

A high-fiber diet is mostly made of indigestible plant matter. Adding lots of fiber to your diet can help you lose weight, particularly around the waist. However, the type of fiber you eat is important. Soluble fibers affect your weight the most; they bind with water and form a thick get that slows down food movement in your digestive system. These fibers also prolong nutrient absorption, resulting in reduced appetite and a prolonged feeling of fullness. Good examples of soluble fiber are plant foods like fruits and vegetables.

Eat More Protein

If your goal is to lose weight, adding protein to your diet is the most effective dietary change you can make. Protein is very effective in reducing belly fat and may also help avoid regaining weight. You can increase your protein intake by adding high-protein foods like fish, whole eggs, meat, nuts, and dairy products. By eating more protein, you are boosting your metabolism and reducing hunger levels, making it effective for weight loss. 

Lift Weights

Exercise, especially high-intensity workouts, is a great way to lose weight. To target your belly fat, you should balance your workouts with weight-lifting sessions. You can focus on compound exercises that work your entire body, like deadlifts, chest presses, shoulder presses, kettlebell swings, and lunges.

Get A Good Night’s Sleep

The quality of your sleep influences your general metabolism and overall health. When you don’t get enough sleep, the decision-making part of your brain (frontal lobe) becomes impaired. Simultaneously, the primal part of the brain dealing with motivation and desire becomes more effective. This leads to unhealthy behaviors like stress eating and inactivity, which t causes weight gain. To lose weight, it’s best to develop a better sleep routine of at least 7-8 hours.

Consume More Vitamin C Rich Foods

Vitamin C is related to body weight and waist circumference. Although there is no direct link between overall body fat loss and vitamin C, some studies show that vitamin C and body mass are inversely proportional. This means low levels of vitamin C in the blood are linked with higher body mass index (BMI). Vitamin C is a strong antioxidant that boosts metabolism and helps burn more calories. Adding more vitamin C to your diet improves your body’s ability to oxidize fat and produce energy.

Reduce Sugar And Avoid Sugar-Sweetened Drinks

Consumption of excess sugar and sugar-sweetened beverages is the leading cause of abdominal weight gain. If you are on a weight loss journey, the first thing you need to do is curb all sugar-sweetened drinks.

Manage Stress

As stated earlier, stress is one of the reasons for belly fat. Learning how to manage your stress is a great way to shed some weight. When you are stressed, a few minutes of meditation or deep-belly breathing in a quiet spot can help you calm down. Walks and exercise are also great ways to chill out and maintain normal cortisol levels.

The Different Types Of Belly Fat

Body fat is an insulator and a cushion to protect the internal organs from impact injury. Having a bit of fat around your belly and in other parts of your body is normal. Here are the different types of belly fat.

Subcutaneous Belly Fat

Subcutaneous fat is the type of fat found under the skin. It is the deepest part of the skin located above the muscle. When you pinch a part of your skin, most of what you feel is subcutaneous fat. This is a good type of body fat because it protects the body and houses your blood vessels and nerves. 

Visceral Belly Fat

Visceral belly fat is found deep within the abdominal cavity or inside the belly. It is wrapped around the visceral organs like your liver and intestines, making up about one-tenth of the total body fat. The build-up of visceral fat in the body is what causes the belly to stick out.

6 Scientific Reasons For Belly Fat

Weight gain is natural for cases like aging, pregnancy, or under certain end-specific conditions, and the part of your body that accumulates the most fat can make a big difference in your overall health. Excess fat is mostly stored in the belly, and here are a few reasons.

Eating Trans Fats

Trans fats are one of the most unhealthy types of dietary fat. These are formed by adding hydrogen to unsaturated fat to make it more stable and solid at room temperature. While the body creates little amounts of trans fat, a lot is gotten from consuming processed foods or baked products, which use trans fat as a replacement for healthy, high-cost products. Your body does not benefit from trans fats, so eating food products with these fats will give you a bigger belly and increase your risk for health problems like diabetes and heart disease.

Seriously Stressed

Experiencing some level of stress is normal and, sometimes, healthy. This is how your body responds to difficult or dangerous situations and shows its need for more attention. Cortisol, also known as the stress hormone, is released when the body is exposed to acute stressors or threats like running from a predator. However, chronic stress has negative implications on health and has been linked to abdominal obesity. Today, people are exposed to different psychological events leading to chronic, low-grade stress rather than acute stress. Chronic stress leads to the accumulation of visceral fat, which in turn increases cortisol production. High levels of cortisol also affect the body by increasing negative coping behaviors like poor sleep, unhealthy eating habits, and physical inactivity, which increases body fat or total body weight. Much of this fat is accumulated in the abdomen as visceral fat.

Drinking Too Much Alcohol And Carbonated Beverages

Alcohol and carbonated beverages like soda and energy drinks have high sugar levels. When consumed in excess, the extra calories are stored in the body as fat. Consuming too much alcohol and carbonated beverages leads to the accumulation of visceral fat and increases body mass index (BMI).

Got Too Much Of The Wrong Gut Bacteria

The body contains hundreds of bacteria, most of which are located in your gut (intestines). Gut bacteria play several important roles in the human body, such as producing vitamin K and digesting cellulose. Because of their role in the digestion of food, gut bacteria can affect your weight. Research[2] shows that gut bacteria become potentially harmful when they undergo abnormal changes resulting from bad dietary habits, antibiotics, illness, stress, aging, or lifestyle. Therefore, a change in diet or lifestyle habits can stimulate changes in the gut ecosystem which in turn alters hormone regulation, stimulates inflammation, and causes weight gain.

A Lack Of Exercise

Lack of exercise or physical inactivity is one of the leading causes of abdominal weight gain. Many people live a sedentary lifestyle including sitting throughout the day to watch TV, play video games, or work at a desk. Unfortunately, a large percentage of adults do not meet up with the daily recommended physical activity guidelines. People end up consuming more calories than they burn off daily, leading to the accumulation of fat. Therefore, engaging in physical activity and exercise can reduce your risk of increased belly fat.


Typically, men experience an increase in weight around their bellies as they get older; this is known as the middle-aged spread. This frustrating increase in weight may result from lower testosterone levels or a decrease in muscle mass.

As many men age, their testosterone levels decrease, and they tend to gain extra belly fat. Less testosterone is associated with more belly fat and higher estrogen levels. Low testosterone makes it harder to lose weight and maintain muscle mass. The muscle mass breaks down and is replaced with layers of fat, especially around the waist.

Impact Of Belly Fat On Men’s Health

Impact Of Belly Fat On Men’s Health
Excess visceral fat is a major health concern, especially for men. Photo: khomkrit sangkatechon/Shutterstock

There are several terms used to describe men’s belly fat today: beer belly, potbelly, spare tire, or love handle. In today’s society, these terms are often used jokingly, but abdominal obesity should not be joked about. Excess visceral fat is a major health concern, especially for men, because several studies have linked it to serious health conditions like prostate cancer, diabetes, hypertension, dyslipidemia, symptomatic osteoarthritis, cholelithiasis, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, PCOS, depression, and impaired quality of life. When men gain more abdominal fat, their testosterone production is at risk, and this puts them at a greater chance of depression, low libido, and even prostate cancer. 

The good news is that losing belly fat in men has several health benefits. It reduces the risk of prostate cancer and helps maintain normal testosterone levels. Now that you know excess belly fat is dangerous for your health, the next thing to learn is the easy ways to lose belly fat and live a healthy life. 

Boost Metabolism, Burn Body Fat, And Flatten A Beer Gut

The terms beer gut or beer belly refer to abdominal obesity. This is typically caused by alcohol consumption and is prevalent among men. Adopting a healthy lifestyle and diet is highly effective for fat loss. You not only lose your beer gut, but you also increase your body’s metabolism and minimize your risk of developing health problems.


Putting on weight is much simpler than losing weight. Getting rid of abdominal fat demands diligence and persistence. If you want to permanently lose your belly fat, you should pursue a slow and consistent weight loss journey. Make healthy decisions regarding what to eat and what to avoid, and see a physician before taking supplements or medicine.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can crunches or sit-ups flatten your belly?

The simple answer is no. Unfortunately, crunches or stomach-targeting exercises alone may not help you eliminate excess fat. You need to focus on exercises that engage the whole body for effective abdominal weight loss.

Men with waists larger than 40 inches have excess belly fat. True or false?

True. Men with waist sizes over 40 inches have excess body fat and should consider losing body fat.

What type of diet is best for reducing belly fat?

Food high in dietary fiber, like whole grains, is great for weight loss.

Can skinny people have excess belly fat?

Yes. Even skinny people have hidden belly fat resulting from unhealthy eating habits.

What health conditions have large bellies been linked to in men?

Abdominal weight or belly fat has been linked to several health conditions like diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, and erectile dysfunction.

What is the secret to belly fat loss?

The most effective way to lose belly fat in men is by healthy eating and regular exercise like walking.

How many meals should one eat daily to improve weight loss?

If you are on a healthy diet, 5 small meals daily is enough to ensure maximum productivity.

Can you lose belly fat without exercising?

You can lose body weight purely by changing your diet. However, frequent exercise speeds up the process and helps you burn more calories every day.

+ 2 Sources

EHproject has strict sourcing guidelines and relies on peer-reviewed studies, academic research institutions, and medical associations. We work mostly with peer-reviewed studies to ensure accurate information. We avoid using tertiary references. You can learn more about how we ensure our content is accurate and current by reading our editorial policy.

  1. Ibrahim, M.M. (2010). Subcutaneous and visceral adipose tissue: structural and functional differences. Obesity Reviews, [online] 11(1), pp.11–18. doi:10.1111/j.1467-789x.2009.00623.x.
  2. Zhang, Y.-J., Li, S., Gan, R.-Y., Zhou, T., Xu, D.-P. and Li, H.-B. (2015). Impacts of Gut Bacteria on Human Health and Diseases. International Journal of Molecular Sciences, [online] 16(12), pp.7493–7519. doi:10.3390/ijms16047493.


Kathleen Bauer is an experienced medical professional and content writer who has worked with reputable healthcare websites and magazines for more than 5 years. She believes not only that disseminating health information in communicable and easy-to-understand… See More