Belly fat is just one of a number of symptoms of metabolic dysfunction. In the words of Jean Nidetch, founder of Weight Watchers, if you’re over weight, you’re not eating enough, of the right food at the right time.
Being over-fat, regardless of where the bulk of it is located around your body, is also a sure sign you’re not exercising enough. Lack of regular vigorous physical activity, coupled with too much high energy density food and too little nutritious food puts it high up on the list of causes of metabolic dysfunction and increased body fat.
If everyone ate wisely and exercised vigorously, doctors would be sitting around twiddling their thumbs.
If you’re over fat there are some of the things you can do to trim down – at the same time improving your metabolic, musculo-skeletal and psychological health.
The Best Way To Lose Belly Fat
First up, stop eating so much. That’s what being over weight is telling you to do.
Second, lower your intake of the garbohydrates – flour and sugar mixed with fat. The garbohydrates are designed to provide you with a large amount of energy in the shortest possible time. They’re the junk foods.
Third, eat the right mix of fat, protein and low energy density carbohydrate (vegetables and fruit). If you were to base your diet on meat, fishy and chicken, mixed with vegetables and fruit, in a couple of months you’ll have trimmed down considerably.
As they get older, most people lose muscle mass and keep eating the same amount of food. They become fatter. In fact if you are not a strength trainer, whilst you may have maintained the same weight as you were 20 years ago, the loss in muscle mass has probably been compensated for by an increase in fat around your body.
Our bodies tend to accumulate fat in certain areas, based largely on genetics. They tend to lose it the same way.
Once you start to lose fat from your body you may notice that you lose it from every where. For instance the first difference you notice may be that the rings on your fingers become looser.
Another way of putting it is that you can’t spot reduce. The body will decide in its own way the places from where you’ll lose fat. Just keep in mind it may well be the case that belly fat is the last fat to go.
To lose fat increase your level of physical activity
- Aerobic exercise will burn off calories and cause you to lose weight.
- 20 minutes a day is good, 30 minutes a day is better and 40 minutes a day is best.
- 4 times a week is good, five times is better and six times is best.
A heart rate of 120 is good, 130 is better and 140 is best for anyone around 40 years of age. As you get older and your maximum heart rate begins to get lower you can reduce this heart rate formula.
There is no “best” aerobic exercise to lose belly fat. Just choose the ones you enjoy most. If you don’t like running, try cycling, swimming or working out on the stepper or cross-trainer. The best routine is one you can stick with over the long haul. You have to find it enjoyable. On the other hand, you may keep up a regular aerobic exercise routine if you choose to break up your training with different activities.
Strength training may boost fat loss as much as aerobic exercise, but only if you do it often enough. You need an all round strength training program, concentrated on building up the muscles mass of the large muscles of the body. By building up muscle mass you increase fat burning.
Gardening as a good way to peel off excess body fat. If you really want to kick off your fat loss program spend an energetic weekend in the garden.
The conclusion reached from research indicates that people who have a dog are fitter and slimmer than people who don’t, the reason being that dogs are good at taking humans for walks. A dog would much rather go for a walk after work than sit down and have a drink!
If you prefer a more social environment for your exercise, join a group exercise class at your local gym or recreation center.
OK, so you want a six pack set of abdominal muscles. If you already do situps and pressups it may be the case you already have six-pack abs. The problem is the fat that’s on top of them stops them from being exposed.
Men who possess over 25% body fat are over weight. As a rule of thumb add 10% to this figure for women.
At less than 20% men look in pretty good shape and at around 15% they look trim and taut. But, to reveal the six pack you’d probably have to get under 10% body fat.
When it comes to losing body fat, gentle, relaxing and de-stressing exercise has been found to be beneficial. The best of the relaxing exercises is yoga.
Whenever your body is stressed out (due to mental or emotional stress), it responds with an attempt at self-preservation by stimulating the release of the hormone cortisol, which tells your body to start storing fat – particularly around the waist. This response is a throwback to the days when our ancestors had to survive times of famine.
Yoga relieves muscle tension and reduces the production of cortisol. It calms the mind, slows down the heart rate and reduces blood pressure. I’ve had people tell me that whilst it looks easy, and the emphasis is on relaxed, flowing movement, there can be enough work going on as you move from one pose to the other to cause you to break into a sweat.
In the mean time stay tuned, highly tuned, increase the amount of time you spend on aerobic exercise, strength training and yoga – and eat from the top of the Hourglass.