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Getting Rid of Stomach Fat

Getting Rid of Stomach Fat

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Shrinking stomach fat can be a challenging and potentially very frustrating goal to achieve.  The reason has to do with the type of body fat that we store around our middles.  For many of us, it can be highly resistant to our efforts to burn it away, despite our very healthy and consistent strategies. 

Moreover, the more stomach fat you carry, the more challenging it can be to burn it away.  Depending on your body type, it may be the place on your body where progress occurs last.  This can make it difficult to remain motivated to keep up your efforts to blast through your dieting and workout strategy.

The More Stomach Fat You Have, the Tougher it Can Be to Burn

When your BMI is 30 or higher, if your excess weight is stored around your middle, this belly fat could place you at risk of additional health issues. Fatty tissue which is stored around the stomach and abdomen (sometimes called intra-abdominal, or visceral fat) carries a greater health risk than fat located in the lower body around the butt and thighs.

Some health studies show that abdominal fat leads to raised blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, high blood sugar, insulin resistance syndrome (metabolic syndrome) and heart disease. Because of this, some experts believe that waist circumference and fat-distribution is more important than your actual weight in predicting future health risks.

Understanding why you carry your weight where you do and what you can do to lose belly fat can be an important first step to making sure you lower many of those potential health risks.  These first steps can put you on the path to a longer and healthier life overall.

What Causes Belly Fat?

Where we store fat (the energy from surplus calories) is largely determined by a combination of gender, age and genetic inheritance. Men tend to store fat around their middle (apple shape), whereas women typically store fat around the pelvic region, hips, butt and thighs (pear shape). However, women are prone to develop an apple shape in mid-life, after menopause. This is because the female hormones are present in smaller amounts and so their shape tends to become more 'male'.

Connection Between Stress and Stomach Fat

Some health studies show that abdominal fat can develop as a result of stress. This is because the hormone cortisol is released during stress, and a high level of cortisol in the body appears to stimulate the storage of fat around the belly and abdomen.

Research Connecting Stress Levels and Abdominal Fat

Researchers at Yale University studied 60 women and found that the more stress they were under, the more fat they stored around their stomachs. So, it appears that a fat belly is most likely to develop in stressed men of any age, and older stressed women. For more information read Weight Gain and Stress.

How to Prevent a Belly Fat from Accumulating

If you are prone to store fat around your middle, the healthiest solution is to maintain a normal weight. By matching your calorie intake to your calorie needs and prevent weight gain, you will prevent the development of any excess fat.

How Can You Reduce Stomach Fat Stored Around Your Middle?

However, if you already have a lot of belly fat, the best option is to follow a healthy weight loss diet, combined with fitness exercises such as aerobics (to burn extra calories) and a stomach-toning workout to help tighten and strengthen abdominal muscles. That said, reducing stomach fat takes time - especially if you are an apple-shape.

Despite what commercials say, there is no diet plan or type of exercise that can "target" only your fat stomach. So please don't get impatient. Losing your belly fat will happen as you lose fat from all over your body. It won't happen overnight but is well worth the effort.

Speak with Your Doctor

If you are looking to make some healthy lifestyle changes to reduce your stomach fat, make sure you speak with your doctor.  There is a lot of misinformation online, so it’s always best to get your medical recommendations directly from a professional source.  Moreover, even when you do find reputable information online, without an expert medical background, you may not be using what you’ve learned to your best ability.

What to Talk About with Your Doctor to Reduce Stomach Fat

Your doctor can help to advise you regarding how much weight you should lose, how many calories you should be eating in a day and how you should improve your physical activity levels. This can help you to avoid mistakes that could harm your nutrition, place you at risk of injury, or slow down your weight loss progress.