You eat well and exercise regularly, but you still have belly fat. Here’s some straight talk about why.
- A small layer of healthy body fat almost always accompanies optimal physical and emotional wellness. Just saying.
- You’re eating (or drinking) too much. If you’re taking in more calories than you’re using, the excess has to go somewhere–and the first place it often goes is the mid-section.
- You’re not eating enough. When you consistently consume too far below your body’s energy requirements, you will in fact slow your metabolic rate, disrupt blood sugar balance, and increase cortisol levels – all of which will directly contribute to subcutaneous belly fat accumulation.
- You’re eating at the wrong time. Rather than consuming all your calories from 6-11pm (as many people do), spreading the same volume of food out throughout the day will make a tremendous difference to your waistline. Numerous studies have proven this to be true, and is attributed to the many physiological consequences of regularly fasting for several hours while binging during others.
- You eat crap. High fat, refined sugars, and chemical preservatives can disrupt normal cellular functions in the body and increase cortisol levels and inflammation – all of which disrupt metabolism and can contribute to weight gain. Take an honest look at your habits.
- Your idea of balance isn’t balanced. “Dieting” Monday to Thursday and binging Friday to Sunday is not a good balance, nor will it support your long-term fitness or health goals.
- You have an ailment or condition. Blood sugar instability, poor sleep quality, digestive impairment, hormone imbalance, poor stress management, unaddressed medication or illness side effects. . . . Any of these can affect how our bodies store and hold onto excess body fat. Maybe it’s time to schedule a visit with your physician.
To sum up: if you’re feeling a little . . . fluffy around the middle, or if your belly fat has been around so long that you’ve given it a name, take a deep breath, take a look at your habits, and figure out what you can do to trim down. Small changes can make a big difference.