How To Come to Grips with Belly Fat and Win!

picture of two cartoon figuresTrumping belly fat over the holidays could be a feat in itself. But then again, why not try? Simply sighing and having another slice of pie is not going to work out very well in January!

Here’s the Battle Plan

The eHow.com writers explain the problem and offer key approaches. Reminding us that belly fat translates into type 2 diabetes and heart disease risk, they tell us genetics determines where we store fat but there are ways to dump it and keep it off.

Less Really Means Less

No matter how creative we think we are being we must cut calories to lose fat. Each pound equals 3,500 calories, which means you must burn 3,500 calories to lose one pound of fat. By eating 500 to 1,000 calories less daily you could lose one to two pounds per week.

Before you collapse in disgust at the thought of the numbers, remember when you lose at that rate you can exercise and stay firm, instead of sagging, and you are more apt to keep the weight off.

So figure out your daily calorie count, and figure in the exercise to go with it.

White Sugar or Flour and Martinis Won’t Fly

Avoiding the troublemakers that trigger midsection storage is smart. eHow.com tells us a 2010 study in Nutrition Research  found ingredients high on the glycemic index, such as white sugars and flours, can easily become abdominal fat. University of Buffalo researchers found alcohol can also contribute to belly fat. According to their report in the Journal of Nutrition, wine drinkers had the least belly fat, and liquor drinkers the most

Resistance Training and Weights Work

According to the American College of Sports Medicine, adults need at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity cardiovascular exercise each week. Cut the time up any way you wish, just make sure you get it. Resistance training will light the metabolism fire and weight training will add another strong punch.

Ditch Cortisol, the Stress Hormone

In a 2008 study in Endocrinology and Metabolism, researchers found a strong correlation between the cortisol levels of overweight girls and excessive abdominal fat. A 2011 study published in Obesity examined how stress affected cortisol levels and visceral fat in girls. Participants who had high levels of school-related stress also had high levels of cortisol and abdominal fat. Dialing the stress way back with efforts to reduce the school pressure would help.

For all of us, healthy eating and stress reducers like meditation, yoga, tai chi and walking are effective ways to cut cortisol and trim the waist.

As you enjoy the holidays, reach for another stick of celery with hummus and sip your wine instead of a martini. The more you hold the line the better January will look—and you, too.

 

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