How to Get Rid of Underarm Fat (And Why You Have It in the First Place)

Lexi Lutz
Reading Time: 10 minutes
how to get rid of underarm fat
Table of Contents

Listen, I know underarm fat can be a source of self-consciousness, especially when it comes to wearing sleeveless clothing. 

But don’t worry, with the right approach, you can say goodbye to underarm fat and hello to confidence!

In this article, we’ll talk about the optimal diet to reduce underarm fat, exercises to perform, and the factors that contribute to having it in the first place. 

Why Do We Have It?

So, why do we have underarm fat?

Well, a variety of factors can contribute to its accumulation. 

Underarm fat accumulation can be influenced by a variety of factors. It is important to note that everyone’s body is unique, and there is no one-size-fits-all answer. 

However, genetics can contribute to a predisposition for storing fat in certain areas, including the underarms. 

Hormonal imbalances due to medicine, diet, or changes in sleep pattern may also contribute to underarm fat. Especially when it comes to estrogen, which plays an important role in normal sexual and reproductive development in women.

It could also just be a normal response to the aging process. As we age, our skin produces less collagen, (the thing that makes our skin bouncy and resilient) making the skin sag. Your body also goes through a redistribution of fat cells as you age, explaining pesky underarm fat.

causes of underarm fat accumulation

It’s important to remember that the causes of underarm fat accumulation are complex and multi-faceted. While certain factors like genetics and hormonal changes can contribute to the development of underarm fat, it’s crucial to adopt a holistic approach towards underarm fat reduction that includes diet, targeted exercises, and lifestyle modifications.

Start with Diet

To reduce underarm fat, it’s important to focus on overall body fat reduction

This can be achieved through a combination of a calorie deficit, balanced diet, and portion control. By consuming fewer calories than you burn, your body will start utilizing stored fat for energy, including in the underarm area.

  • Include lean proteins, such as chicken breast, fish, tofu, and Greek yogurt. These protein sources not only help build and repair muscles but also require more energy for digestion which promotes fat burning.
  • Fruits and vegetables, rich in vitamins, minerals, and fiber, are also essential components of a healthy eating plan. Opt for colorful options like berries, citrus fruits, leafy greens, and cruciferous vegetables. Not only do they provide important nutrients, but they are also low in calories and high in fiber, promoting a feeling of satiety and aiding in weight management.
  • Whole grains, such as brown rice, quinoa, and whole wheat bread, are important sources of complex carbohydrates. These carbohydrates provide sustained energy while keeping you fuller for longer. Avoid refined grains, such as white bread and pasta, as they are low in fiber and can spike blood sugar levels.
  • Healthy fats, including avocado, nuts, and olive oil, should also be included in your underarm fat-burning diet. These fats are crucial for various bodily functions and can help reduce inflammation while keeping you satisfied. However, be mindful of portion control as fats are calorie-dense.
  • It’s important to practice portion control and be mindful of your overall calorie intake. Aim for a balance of macronutrients, including protein, carbohydrates, and fats, and avoid excessive consumption of sugary and processed foods. 

Remember, a balanced diet is crucial for overall health and well-being.

Targeted Exercises

Targeted exercises can be a great way to tone and strengthen the muscles in your underarm area, helping you achieve a more sculpted and defined look. 

Incorporating these exercises into your fitness routine, along with strength training and resistance exercises, can help reduce underarm fat and create a more toned appearance.

exercises for underarm fat
  1. Dumbbell exercises: Using dumbbells can provide resistance and help tone your underarm muscles. Try exercises like dumbbell rows, bicep curls, and lateral raises.
  2. Push-ups: Push-ups are a classic exercise that engage multiple muscles, including those in your underarms. Start with modified push-ups on your knees if necessary, and gradually work your way up to standard push-ups.
  3. Tricep dips: Tricep dips are a great exercise for targeting the muscles in the back of your arms, which can help tone your underarm area. You can perform tricep dips using a bench, chair, or even the edge of a sturdy table.
  4. Shoulder exercises: Shoulder exercises like shoulder presses and lateral raises can also engage the muscles in your underarm area. Incorporate these exercises into your routine for a well-rounded arm workout.

Remember to start with weights that challenge you but are appropriate for your fitness level. Gradually increase the weight as you become stronger. Aim for 2-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions for each exercise, and rest for 30-60 seconds between sets.

By incorporating targeted exercises into your workout routine, you can help reduce underarm fat and achieve a more toned appearance in your underarms.

Lifestyle Changes

It’s not just about diet and exercise; managing stress levels, improving sleep quality, and staying hydrated are equally important factors.

  • Stress can have a direct impact on underarm fat accumulation. When we experience high levels of stress, our bodies produce cortisol, a hormone that can contribute to fat storage. To reduce stress, try incorporating relaxation techniques into your daily routine. Mindfulness and deep breathing exercises can help calm the mind and reduce cortisol levels, potentially minimizing underarm fat.
  • Getting quality sleep is also crucial for overall fat reduction, including in the underarm area. Aim for 7-9 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night. Establish a consistent sleep routine and create a relaxing environment in your bedroom to promote better sleep quality.
  • Hydration plays a significant role in maintaining a healthy body and reducing underarm fat. Make sure to drink an adequate amount of water throughout the day. Staying hydrated not only helps regulate bodily functions but also supports the body’s natural fat-burning processes.

Remember, making small lifestyle modifications can have a big impact on your underarm fat reduction journey. So, prioritize stress management, sleep quality, and hydration as part of your overall approach to achieving slimmer and more toned underarms.

lifestyle modifications for underarm fat reduction

From Quick Fixes to Long-Term Strategies

With underarm fat reduction, quick fixes may offer temporary results, but long-term strategies are key to achieving sustainable and lasting changes. 

While body contouring treatments like cryolipolysis (freezing and killing fat cells) or radiofrequency therapy (tightening the skin using radiofrequency) can help reduce underarm fat, it’s important to view them as complements to a healthy lifestyle rather than replacements. Adopting sustainable lifestyle changes is the key to long-term success.

Remember, they begin with making nutritious food choices and maintaining a healthy weight. A well-balanced diet that includes lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains can support overall fat reduction, including in the underarm area. By consuming fewer calories than you burn, your body will start to utilize stored fat, helping to reduce underarm fat over time.

Regular exercise is a crucial component of long-term underarm fat reduction. Targeted exercises, such as arm and shoulder workouts, can help tone and strengthen the muscles in the underarm area, creating a more sculpted appearance. Incorporating strength training and resistance exercises into your fitness routine can further contribute to underarm fat reduction.

Sustainable change takes time and commitment. Embrace a holistic approach by prioritizing lifestyle modifications that promote overall well-being, such as stress management and quality sleep. High stress levels can lead to increased cortisol levels, potentially contributing to underarm fat accumulation. Engaging in relaxation techniques, like mindfulness and deep breathing exercises, may help reduce stress and minimize underarm fat. Additionally, staying hydrated and getting enough sleep are crucial for supporting your body’s natural fat-burning processes.


How can I get rid of underarm fat?

To reduce underarm fat, start by incorporating a combination of dietary changes, targeted exercises, and lifestyle modifications. Focus on overall body fat reduction through a calorie deficit, balanced diet, and portion control. Incorporate lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats into your diet. Additionally, perform targeted exercises that specifically target the underarm muscles, such as arm workouts, shoulder exercises, and tricep dips. Make lifestyle changes to manage stress levels, prioritize sleep quality, and stay hydrated. Consider complementing healthy habits with body contouring treatments for quicker results.

Why do we have underarm fat?

Underarm fat can be influenced by factors such as genetic predisposition, hormonal changes, the aging process, and hereditary influences. While genetics can contribute to a predisposition for storing fat in certain areas, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. Everyone’s body is unique, and the accumulation of fat in the underarm area can vary.

What should I eat to reduce underarm fat?

To reduce underarm fat, focus on overall body fat reduction through a balanced diet. Incorporate lean proteins, fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats into your meals. Create a calorie deficit by consuming fewer calories than you burn. Practice portion control to maintain a balanced calorie intake. By providing your body with the nutrients it needs while promoting fat utilization, you can help reduce underarm fat.

What exercises can help reduce underarm fat?

Targeted exercises can help reduce underarm fat and tone muscles in the area. Perform arm and shoulder workouts, such as dumbbell exercises, push-ups, and tricep dips, to specifically target the underarm muscles. Incorporate strength training and resistance exercises into your fitness routine for overall toning and fat reduction. Consistent exercise, along with a balanced diet, can lead to a more sculpted and defined underarm area.

What lifestyle changes can contribute to reducing underarm fat?

Making lifestyle changes can support underarm fat reduction. Manage stress levels through relaxation techniques and mindfulness exercises, as high stress can contribute to fat accumulation. Prioritize sleep quality to optimize hormonal balance and overall health. Stay hydrated as proper hydration supports fat metabolism. Incorporating these lifestyle changes can complement your diet and exercise routine, leading to a reduction in underarm fat.

Are there quick fixes for underarm fat reduction?

While quick fixes like body contouring treatments can provide temporary results, long-term strategies are essential for sustainable underarm fat reduction. Consider non-invasive procedures like cryolipolysis or radiofrequency therapy, which can help reduce underarm fat. However, these treatments should be seen as a complement to healthy lifestyle choices, including a nutritious diet and regular exercise. Long-term strategies involving sustainable lifestyle changes will provide lasting results.




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