Wednesday, November 4, 2020

What Causes Belly Fat.

I was working out to a new DVD the other day.  The person leading it stated that belly fat is caused by stress.  That struck me as maybe not quite correct because I tend to have some and it goes away and comes back, almost on a cycle.   I am one of those women who have always been a bit goofy in the abdomen area and have accepted it but I'd still like to know what causes it and how to get rid of it.

First, there are two types of belly fat.  One type is visceral which is the fat that surrounds organs while the other is subcutaneous which is the fat just under the skin.  

In general, one can gain fat in the belly area by eating poorly, not exercising, and stress. There are significant reasons one would want to get rid of the excess belly flat.  When a person has extra belly fat, it can lead to or increases the chances of heart disease, heart attacks, high blood pressure, strokes, type 2 diabetes, asthma, certain types of cancer and dementia or Alzheimers.

If someone eats too many sugary foods such as cake, candy, soda, or too much fruit juice can lead to a weight gain, slow a person's metabolism thus making it harder or a person to burn calories.  One other thing that can cause a person to gain belly fat is to not include enough protein in their diet.  In addition, people should eat more grains, cut down on the transfats and increase monosaturated and polyunsaturated fats as they are healthier.

Unfortunately, drinking too much alcohol can also cause men to gain wight in the abdomen.  It can also cause liver disease and inflammation.   In addition, if a person does not get enough exercise they will put on weight and it becomes harder to loose any weight. As far as stress, stress causes the body to produce cortisol which helps the body deal with stress and can slow down a person's metabolism.  Furthermore, when people are under stress, they often eat way more than is good for them and gain weight.  In addition, when people do not sleep well, it can effect their weight.

Fortunately, there are things a person can do to help loose any fat gained in the belly region.  One of the first things is to improve what you eat.  One should eliminate sugar, fatty foods including commercial baked goods with transfats and refined carbohydrates.  Instead, eat whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and lean proteins.  One should also cut back on  alcohol at the same time.

Then one should also increase the amount of exercise. For the most effective results, combine cardio, strength training, high intensity training and resistance training.  It is recommended people get a minimum of 30 minutes per day. Exercise also helps to decrease the amount of stress a person is undergoing.  Add in a bit of meditation and mindfulness.  In addition, try to get out and enjoy the sun more.  One way is to walk outside when you can because sunlight helps regulate metabolism.

One also needs to learn to sleep better at night by relaxing, turning the lights down in the room by replacing lightbulbs with lower wattage and planning to slow down one to two hours before going to bed.  I go to bed and lay in bed at least one hour before I plan to sleep so I can read a book with the lights down and just ease me into being sleepy.  It works most evenings, except when I have something on my mind.  Let me know what you think, I'd love to hear. Have a great day.

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