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How to get a flat stomach

There are a range of methods which promise to deliver a flat stomach. Some of these are more effective than others.  But the ones which work can be broken down into three main categories - exercise, diet and surgery. We will look at these here.


There are plenty of reasons to exercise - it helps to improve your physical health, mental health and is an aid to weight loss. But if you are particularly interested in toning and losing weight from your stomach, there are a number of exercises you should try.

Cardio, or aerobic exercise, is a highly effective way of strengthening the muscles in and around your midsection, contributing to a flatter stomach. Experts recommend doing between 20 and 40 minutes of moderate-to-high intensity cardio exercise a week, such as cycling, jogging, running, or brisk walking. Walking 30 to 40 minutes a day has been proven to have a significant impact on stubborn tummy fat. 

As part of your exercise regimen, you should also be doing regular resistance training. Muscle loss is a common side effect of dieting, but resistance training will help to prevent this, as well as further toning and reducing your waist.

High-intensity training, that is performing intensive activity such as rowing and sprinting with brief periods of rest in between, is another great way of losing weight and flattening the tummy. And the beauty of high-intensity training is that it doesn’t have to take much time out of your day. You will get the benefit from just 10 to 20 minutes a day.

Exercises such as Pilates and stomach crunches will strengthen your core muscles, also contributing to a flatter stomach.


Making changes to your diet plays a key role in weight loss. This in turn will help with the appearance of a flatter stomach.

Cutting your sugar intake is one of the most important things you can do to aid weight loss and achieve your goal of a flat stomach. And eliminating sugar can also substantially cut your risk of serious health conditions, such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

And while you are cutting your sugar intake, it is also worth looking at how much alcohol you consume. Beer and wine are both high in sugar, on a par with sweetened, fizzy drinks, and drinking too much will lead to weight gain, particularly around the stomach area.

Fizzy drinks should be avoided. As well as being highly calorific, the gases in colas and lemonades can cause bloating. Try drinking healthier beverages like water or unsweetened green tea. Green tea and black tea are also scientifically proven to reduce the accumulation of belly fat.

Limiting your intake of carbohydrates is one of the biggest things you can do to help with weight loss. By replacing refined carbs with unprocessed, whole food carbs, you are less likely to have excess fat around your abdomen.

Protein is incredibly important when it comes to weight loss, as the body uses more calories digesting protein than fat or carbs. Foods such as eggs and salmon have been demonstrated to help with weight loss.

Monounsaturated fatty acids are considered to be ‘good fats’ and diets high in monounsaturated fatty acids can prevent fat from accumulating in the abdomen. A Mediterranean diet full of monounsaturated fatty acids, such as avocados, nuts and seeds, can reduce your risk of gaining weight around your middle.

Grains, nuts, legumes, fruits, vegetables, dairy, fish and unprocessed meat are all loaded with all the things you need to help weight loss, including nutrients, fibre, vitamins and minerals.

If you are serious about losing weight, it is a good idea to track your food intake. This will help you to identify bad habits, highlight the number of calories you are consuming and help you to eat more mindfully, being more aware of what you are putting into your body. There are a number of apps available which can help you with this.


We are all different, so sometimes exercise and diet alone won’t help you to achieve a flat stomach. This is particularly true if you have lost a lot of weight and have been left with a lot of excess skin around your midsection. There are a number of surgical options available here at the Cadogan Clinic.

Abdominoplasty, otherwise known as a tummy tuck, is a surgical procedure which deals with excess, sagging skin in the abdominal area, caused by weight loss, pregnancy or the ageing process. An abdominoplasty removes the excess skin from above the waistline, tightens the muscles and fascia of the abdominal wall, restoring a tighter, flatter-looking stomach. Abdominoplasty is a very common procedure for both men and women looking to achieve a flatter and more toned abdominal area. 

A traditional Full Tummy Tuck or Abdominal Reduction is now obsolete. But we offer a range of abdominoplasty procedures here at the Cadogan Clinic including Brazilian Abdominoplasty, the most advanced procedure we offer. Others include Mini Tummy, Caesar Correction, The Minimally Invasive Abdominoplasty or Reduction, The Fleur-De-Lis Abdominoplasty, an Apronectomy and the Body Lift. These techniques target different areas of the abdomen, some are minimally invasive and can be done as a day case. Our expert surgeon will be able to advise you on the best treatment according to your body type and what you hope to achieve through the surgery.

An abdominoplasty primarily targets excess skin as opposed to tackling the problem of excess fat. If you also wish to tackle the issue of excess fat, we recommend the abdominoplasty procedure is carried out alongside liposuction. Lipo involves the removal of unwanted or stubborn areas of fat that do not respond to either a healthy diet or exercise. Lipo helps to contour the stomach. We offer the most effective liposuction techniques, all of which are suitable for both men and women. These are traditional liposuction, Body Jet liposuction and laser liposuction and your consultant will be able to advise which option is best for you.

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