Posted: July 10, 2009 in exercise, food, health, nutrition, Uncategorized, Weight Loss
Tags: , , , , , ,


By Sylvia Anderson, AHJ Editor — Published: July 09, 2009

Spare tire. Muffin top. Potbelly. Middle age spread. Shall I go on? We’ve all heard these terms to describe that area of the mid-section where extra belly fat resides. But many people don’t know just how dangerous stomach fat can be. Stomach fat, also known as visceral fat, has been linked to a number of health conditions, including cardiovascular disease, diabetes, breast cancer and colon cancer. Visceral fat is much more dangerous than the fat that lands on the hips, thighs and buttocks (known as subcutaneous fat). So much so that even someone considered slender but who carries a bit more fat around the belly may have a greater health risk than someone is actually obese, according to Dr. Kerry Stewart, professor of clinical exercise physiology at John Hopkins School of Medicine. Keep reading to discover 4 easy steps to blast belly fat once and for all!

A ten-year study of Chinese adults revealed older people with extra belly fat had worse memory and less verbal fluency than adults who were considered “fit.” So how can you blast belly fat and avoid such life-threatening health conditions? Below are a few ways to deflate that spare tire.

1. Eliminate Trans Fat
Recently admonished by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, trans fat (also known as “partially hydrogenated oil”) is found in vegetable shortening, margarine, cookies and other snack foods. And guess what? It goes right to your tummy.

Wake Forest University conducted a six-year study of male monkeys, which supports the attacks on trans fat. The monkeys were split into two groups – one group was fed a diet containing trans fats; the second group was fed only mono-saturated fat. While both groups received the same amount of calories and fat content, the group eating trans fat gained 7.2 percent body weight with a significant increase in visceral fat.

Quick Tip: Check nutritional ingredients closely to make sure you are avoiding dangerous trans fat.

2. Get Moving
Regular physical exercise has been proven again and again to reduce belly fat, and rather quickly at that. A recent study at Duke University Medical Center found that subjects who remained sedentary for a mere six months experienced a nine percent increase in visceral fat, while those who walked an average of 20 miles per week lost both visceral and subcutaneous fat. Subjects who walked 12 miles per week neither gained nor lost weight.

Quick Tip: Try to get 30-60 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity each day to prevent adding inches to your waistline.

3. Sleep Tight
How many hours of sleep do you get each night? Studies have shown that people who sleep less than four hours a night are a whopping 70 percent more likely to be overweight than those who get seven to nine hours of sleep. You may be wondering – what does sleep have to do with weight? Lack of sleep lowers the protein leptin, which helps to suppress appetite, and inhibits the production of insulin which regulates blood sugar.

Quick Tip: Adjust your schedule to ensure you get a minimum of seven solid hours of sleep each night.

4. Chill Out
These days most of us carry way too much on our plates to maintain a healthy stress level. But having too much stress in your life can also cause you to carry too much on your middle as well. When you’re anxious, your body releases adrenaline, cortisol and insulin – a combination which has been associated with increased appetite and added fat to your waistline.

Quick Tip: Take time to relax throughout the day even if it’s just for a few minutes at a time and you’ll be one step closer to getting a handle on your tummy troubles.

Get Strong! Stay Strong!


  1. jazyjay says:

    It is so true that stress can cause you to have a belly. The body releases cortisol – the stress hormone, which causes you to be hungry. You end up eating everything in the house. It’s a natural thing to get you to ready for the fight or flight. So like Chris says – stop stressing – chill out.

  2. Rob says:

    Stress does cause fat from the hormone cortisol. After reading I found your post and the advice on sleeping is wonderful thanks so much.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s