Losing belly fat sounds easy enough. Eating a proper diet and daily exercise will do the trick. But even after doing those things regularly, you are here reading this article.
“Why I am not losing belly fat?”—this is a question every Indian man asks from time to time. They usually have a large round belly, which is identified as “apple shape”, where the waistline is excessive. The “pear shape” is denoted to women, where the fats tend to accumulate around hips and thighs. A waistline above 40 inches in men, and 35 inches in women, increases the risk factor for major diseases. But now, let’s focus on the belly or abdominal fat.
The abdomen has two main regions where the cells collect fats—subcutaneous fat, and visceral fat.
Subcutaneous fat is the jiggly kind of fat right under the skin of the abdomen. It is mostly harmless and may even protect against some diseases.
Visceral fat surrounds the organ. It is not visible from the outside but is associated with heart diseases and diabetics. It also releases several hormones and chemicals.
The main reason for fats being in the abdominal area is that they help with padding, energy reserve, and temperature control.
So after that long introduction, today we will talk about the reasons for not losing those jiggly fats and will share some tips for losing belly fat. Let’s get started!
The main reasons for not losing belly fat
1. Unhealthy eating habits
Buying lunch from the café instead of home-cooked food, eating processed food like chips, biscuits, donuts, or any carbonated beverages. This bad habit is common for any office goer.
The same goes if you are trying to follow a strict diet. Eating nothing for hours and then gobbling everything down leads to an increased amount of calories that can affect losing belly fat in men.
Consuming fewer calories than what you burn is an easy piece of advice to give but applying that, in reality, is hard.
Staying committed and consistent with your diet is an important step. Having 5 – 6 meals a day is a good meal pattern, including breakfast, lunch, and dinner. You could also follow the “eat every 2 hours” pattern, where you will eat a small meal every 2 hours.
Include a protein-rich diet that should also contain carbohydrates and fats to fuel the body. Also, increased consumption of fruits and veggies will increase water, fiber, vitamins, and minerals intake.
2. Wrong exercises
Having a sedentary lifestyle will lead to an increase in waist size, and doing the wrong exercise is just like icing on the cake. Remember, there is no specific workout to target a particular body part. If you want to go for losing belly fat, then you should focus on your whole body.
Imagine stars having six-pack abs but with lean hands and legs. It’s not possible. So, losing fat on a particular body part is also not possible.
It is recommended to do 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous activity throughout the week. You could also include strength training in your workout schedule. Strength training helps muscles grow, which burns more fats.
Stress can cause weight gain. Cortisol, which increases sugar in the blood, regulates the immune system and helps to properly metabolize food.
If you are stressed, your cortisol level rises, and your cravings for sugary/fatty foods increases. The term “stress eating” originated from this.
The best advice would be to reduce stress. First, try to find out the reason for your stress. Second, find ways to eliminate or reduce the stress.
It could be anything, from watching your favorite shows to listening to k-pop in a dark corner of your house (pun intended!). Do whatever reduces your stress and practice mindful eating.
4. Sleeping problems
Many people think that sleeping = wasting precious time. Sleep is the reset button that allows your body to heal itself. By risking 7 – 8 hours of sleep, you increase the stress hormone cortisol.
Yes, sleep and stress are intertwined. Stress can affect sleep quality, whereas insufficient sleep can increase stress levels. Cool, right?
Getting enough bedtime is a no-brainer for this one.
Choose your time to go to bed and don’t get distracted by social media, or binging your favorite series. Try to keep away any electronic devices half an hour before bed.
Try reading a book, or count how many superheroes are there in the DC Universe, if you have a problem sleeping.
5. Alcohol much!
“Beer Belly” is a term famous not only for drinking beer. All types of alcohol (to varying degrees) contribute to abdominal fat. These liquid calories don’t fill up your stomach and provide no nutrients.
Drinking alcohol affects your metabolism rate, making it difficult if you want to go for losing belly fat. It also increases your appetite (the roadside food stalls thank you for that at midnight).
Staying away from alcohol is the best way for losing belly fat and your overall weight. If needed (or forced), keep it to a minimum of 2 drinks.
6. Getting older
Age always catches up with us. As you age, your metabolic rate slows down, affecting how efficiently your body burns calories.
Women go through hormonal changes due to menopause. During menopause, the estrogen levels fall and fat cells around the stomach delay the process of fat removal from the bloodstream. Thus, the bulk of fat ends up in your abdomen.
Try some low-impact exercises if you are in your 60s, and maintain a balanced diet. If not, then talk to a physician or a trainer and add weight training to your workout schedule.
Menopause can require hormone therapy and will need close supervision by your doctor
7. Underlying medical condition
These conditions tend to affect the balance of your hormones and also your metabolism. The human body is complicated and having a medical condition reduces the chances of weight loss.
Always talk to your doctor about your medical conditions. They will also recommend if it is safe for you to follow a weight loss program. Advice from a nutritionist is also important for a proper diet schedule.
Losing belly fat in men is a bit complicated. You have to follow a healthy and active lifestyle to reduce belly fat. Self-evaluation can help you to evaluate your lifestyle, and finally, help in getting rid of that stubborn belly fat. We also shared some tips that might help you in your journey.