woman doing ab workouts in a group workout class

You don’t need to be in the gym pouring out sweat to reduce your fat. There are easy ways to increase your metabolism and chip away at that fat right now!

Short spurts of exercise: Tabata is called a miracle workout because it seriously only takes about four minutes and you still get big results. This is due in part to the fact that it doesn’t effect your satiety as much as a longer workout would. You won’t feel ravenous after a 4-minute, kick-butt session! (via DailyMail)

Vitamin C: This miracle vitamin helps balance cortisol levels, which have been linked to weight gain.

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Good fats: It takes fat to burn fat. When you burn fats into energy, you will actually receive a more consistent level of energy than you do while burning carbs!

Add some spice to your dish: Eating spicy foods can temporarily boost your metabolism up to 8% higher than your normal metabolic rate. However, this is a very temporary boost. Be careful not to give in to sweets afterward! (via New York Times)

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Photo Credit: Mr. Big Ben

Drizzle some vinegar on your meals: The acetic acid in vinegar activates genes in your body that spread out fat, reducing the amount of fat stored around your waist. Much like the peppers, the acid also increases your thermogenesis which is the process by which your body burns fat to create heat or energy.

Take your PMS to the G-Y-M: According to a recent study from the University of Adelaide in Australia, you can lose more weight exercising during the later half of your menstrual cycle. Estrogen and progesterone promote the use of fat as energy within your body. That means more is torched during your workout. The study revealed that women burned about 30 percent more fat two weeks post ovulation than two days before menstruation.

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Take some deep breaths: Stress produces a hormone called cortisol which is linked to abdominal fat. Cortisol stimulates your appetite and slows your metabolism down, placing your body in fat storage mode. (via Redbook)

Pop some iron: Iron helps your red blood cells transport oxygen. Your cells won’t function properly if they don’t receive enough oxygen, resulting in fatigue and exhaustion. That’s not the only thing slowed down: your metabolism starts to slow down too!

>>Read more: Signs You Might Be Iron Deficient

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Sip some green tea: Green tea contains special polyphenols that help dissolve excess triglycerides that would otherwise be turned into fat. Its antioxidant EGCG (epigallocatechin gallate) stimulates the central nervous system and releases fat into the bloodstream. This fat is then used as energy!