How to Lose Belly Fat
and Keep It Off
Learn How to Burn Stomach Naturally
Belly Shape Up is all about how to lose belly fat and keep it off. When you look into the mirror, what do you see? Is your body round and soft? What about your belly? Does it stretch over your pants or strain against your clothes? If so, then you are in good company. In fact, there is a correlation between growing older and weight gain, which is due to several reasons, including a decrease in metabolism.
Older adults are at a greater risk of gaining weight, especially around the waist for a variety of different reasons.
Recent stats tell us that over 60% of the US adult population is now considered overweight or obese. The obesity epidemic has drastic consequences for the individual and for society. The number one cause of death among US adults is heart disease (a symptom of obesity), and our current generation of children may have the macabre honor of being the first to live a shorter lifespan than their parents. Losing belly fat has therefore become an important priority.
How has that flabby stomach come to wreck so much havoc? Researchers are delving deeper into the science of fat and have come up with a surprising finding: not all fat is alike. Belly fat is much more metabolically active and therefore more dangerous than other kinds of fat. Fortunately, related research has found that fat around the belly is the easiest fat to lose.
What Is Belly Fat?
When you pinch a piece of your belly, what you are holding between your fingers is subcutaneous fat. This is the layer of fat that sits just below the skin. While it certainly isn’t welcome in large quantities, subcutaneous fat is not as harmful as another kind of fat, known as visceral fat, a major reason to lose abdominal fat.
Visceral fat hides deep inside the abdomen, winding around internal organs. This type of fat is metabolically active and releases harmful chemicals and hormones into the body.
Abdominal Fat Health Dangers
Scientists are still trying to figure out exactly why mid-section fat has such a harmful effect on the human body. Many theories are currently being researched, but answers are sketchy. What is clear is that visceral fat is metabolically active and causes inflammation throughout the body. Inflamed arteries increase blood pressure and cholesterol and significantly contribute to heart disease.
Additionally, belly fat may impact the liver and affect insulin resistance, leading to diabetes. Other studies have linked this type of fat to dementia, stroke, and numerous kinds of cancer, including breast and colorectal cancer.
Another reason to lose belly fat, the obesity epidemic is a fundamental contributor to sky rocketing health care costs, lost work productivity, and low self-esteem among adults and especially children.
Studies show that overweight adults make less money and earn fewer promotions than their normal weight peers even when all other factors are controlled for. Additionally, overweight children rate themselves less intelligent and less likely to succeed than thinner children.
Belly fat inflicts a severe health, wellness and lifestyle cost on the individual, which is multiplied exponentially on a societal level. Everyone must share this cost in one way or another and suffer from its negative impact.
Exercise & Fitness to Burn Belly Fat
The key to shrinking belly fat is simple: burn more calories than you consume. Sound familiar? That’s because it is the same advice you’ve read and heard over and over by weight loss and nutritional experts. Despite all of the scientific and technological advances of the last decades, this simple formula still reigns supreme when it comes to losing weight.
Simple, however, is not always easy. The first part of the equation “burn more calories” is another way of saying exercise. Most health experts recommend at least a half hour of aerobic exercise every day to maintain basic health.
To burn belly fat, start slow and use the principles of progression to gradually improve your fitness level. You may want to begin with a basic walking routine and then progress to jogging and running. Add in other types of cardiovascular exercise such as swimming, biking, or sports to challenge your body in new ways. Join a gym and get over your fear of the treadmill.
You’ll also want to incorporate strength training into your workout routine to challenge your muscles and help develop a slim, taunt figure. This can translated into using the weight machines at a gym, lifting free weights at home, or even doing body exercises such as pushups and crunches.
Nutrition to Get Rid of Stomach Fat
The second part of the “burn more calories than you consume” equation has to do with nutrition. We live in a nutritionally confusing world. Things used to be simple back in caveman days when the only options on the menu were fresh meat from the hunt or fruits, vegetables and nuts gathered directly from the land.
Our ancestors lived for hundreds of thousands of years on this diet, and our bodies are still adapted to that nutritional regiment. In other words, we are not built to successfully handle things like French fries, chocolate shakes, pizza, baby back ribs and triple decker cheeseburgers.
Calories are perhaps the most abundant and cheapest resource in the United States, and they have led us directly into an obesity epidemic. The easiest way to improve nutrition is to cut back on processed foods. Things that come directly out of the ground are generally healthy. Things that come from boxes, bags and any type of container with cartoon characters on it should be approached with the utmost caution. The longer the ingredient list, the more likely it is to contribute to mid-section fat.
Lifestyle Choices to Lose that Belly Fat
Research continues to illuminate the powerful role stress plays in the body. While some stress is necessary, the chronic stress that has become a normal facet of society can be extremely harmful and be a major cause of a large belly.
In order to permanently that roll around the middle, it is important to develop a balanced and healthy lifestyle. This means making sleep a priority, finding moments to relax throughout the day, developing strong and positive relationships and attempting to eliminate as much stress as possible.
Losing weight is a lifetime goal and it requires a monumental shift in the way we think, act and perceive our world. Remember that you always retain the freedom of choice. You choose what nutrition you put into your body. You choose whether to spend the evening on the couch cuddling a bag of potato chips or taking a Pilates class at the gym. You choose whether it’s more important to have a stressful, high paying job or a lower paying job that gives you the flexibility to pursue and achieve your goals.
Ultimately, you are the cause of the belly fat that you see on the other side of the mirror. You can also be the cause of its elimination.