Why do some people put more weight around their waist than others and how do get rid of it?
Do you feel that your arms and legs look good, but the area around your waist does not? Do you put all your excess weight around your tummy?
It’s not just about appearance, storing fat around the waist is also dangerous for your health increasing your risk of diabetes, heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and certain cancers.
Because of where the fat sits on your body, normal diets, even rigorous exercise regimes rarely work. However, there are ways to get rid of the fat around the middle and look great in the short term and healthy in the long term.
First of all, let’s see what causes the fat to be stored in that particular area.
What is the cause?
The main reason is the action of Cortisol, the stress hormone.
Our bodies have been trained since the older days to react quickly to danger and being alert to run or fight if threatened. When your brain foresees any dangerous automatically release adrenaline and cortisol to cope with it.
Unfortunately, the body doesn’t distinguish between real life-threatening danger and late appointments, traffic jams, family disputes, etc. The response is the same.
The problem is that nowadays stress (or perceived threat) can be continuous and unless you do something physical all the extra energy, in the form of glucose and fat has nowhere to go other than redeposits as fat.
Besides after a stressful event cortisol levels remain high for a while increasing your appetite because your body thinks you should refuel after all this fighting or flying and most of the time crave high sugar and fat food and as you don’t need it, there is not a real fight and fly situation, it stores as fat for protection.
But why around the waist?
Because it is close to the liver where it can most quickly be converted back into energy if needed. There it provides the body with protection ready for the next stress attack. It’s the way for your body to try to help. To continue providing the energy it thinks you need, it tries to keep a convenient fat store ready for constant use and creates cravings, and increases appetite to ensure good supplies of necessary fuel.
Why does this affect in particular women in their 40s?
This is due to the combined effect of female hormone changes, slower metabolism, and stress with high cortisol levels. Especially when going into menopause, your body will be keen on keeping this fat around the middle, a plant for estrogen to protect the bones from osteoporosis.
So what can we do to get rid of this stubborn fat in the middle?
The aim is to change your body’s underlying biochemistry so that it gets the message that it is OK to let go of the fat it is choosing to store around the middle of your body.
Here are some tips:
1. Avoid any sugar and refined carbs (read my previous blog on hidden sugar for more information on the subject)
2. Eat little and often to keep the blood sugar stable and avoid glycaemic peaks because when blood sugar drops your body release adrenaline and cortisol to stabilize it and now we know what this can cause.
3. Do not skip breakfast as if you miss it completely your body will go into starving mode and keep the fat stored
4. Avoid alcohol and all fizzy drinks, they fast convert into abdominal fat
5. Avoid any kind of stimulant like coffee, black tea, etc. as they increase cortisol level
6. Have essential fats like Oily fish, nuts, and seeds in your diet as they boost your metabolism, slow down the rate at which the stomach empties, reduce inflammation, and make you less insulin resistant
7. Have your hormones tested to see what is going on in your body and check what vitamins and minerals deficiencies you may have
8. Exercise with a combination of aerobic and weight-training
9. Use supplements to correct the nutritional deficiencies you may have due to the high level of adrenaline and cortisol your body has been exposed to over an extended period.
10. Reduce your stress level by meditating, relaxing, slow down to keep the cortisol level under control
And many others…..
To summarizing, having fat around your waist is an indication of an imbalanced metabolism, in the long term can create health problems it seems hard to get rid of it, but it can be done with a correct and simple lifestyle plan.
That’s all for now.
Ps. If you are struggling with fat around the waist, please be in contact, I’m here to help! Visit my website and book a free discovery call.