Lose Weight, Belly Fat

When you lose weight but still have that stubborn belly fat it is quite frustrating. You work out hard on a regular basis and you eat healthy bur you still cannot seem to reduce belly fat. There are many reasons why you are not losing stomach fat and a lot of times it may be your genes, exercise routine or your diet. Today we will go over some reasons why you are achieving your weight loss goals but not losing fat around the waist.

Flat Stomach

Lose weight and belly fat by changing your diet, strength training and cardio. Photo by Trimmed and Toned

First off, why is belly fat stubborn? “Belly fat is often a sign of ‘stress’ or insulin resistance. When you are stressed, your cortisol levels rise, which may lead to storing fat in your middle,” Amy Shapiro, MS, RD, CDN, and founder of Real Nutrition, says. “Genetics do play a role here as well, so if your parent tends to carry weight in their middle, you might end up doing the same.” You can still achieve that flat stomach you always dreamed of, so do not let genetics discourage you.

Also,  Cassie Lambert, NASM certified trainer and strength coach, mentioned that your weight-loss method may also play a role. “For example, a low-carbohydrate diet will kick-start weight loss, but this is because of the water loss from the glycogen in the muscles and not fat,” she explained. Lambert also cited large amounts of cardio as an example of how to quickly lose weight but not belly fat. In other words, you may be losing water weight and not fat stored in your body.

Evan Harden, personal trainer and National Bar League founder, said that losing weight too fast is a common mistake. “When that happens, it is hard to preserve muscle, let alone grow new muscle,” Harden said. “This leads to losing weight but not body fat and ultimately a poor body composition.” Losing weight slowly is essential to preserving muscle, and Harden noted that new research shows we should not lose more than one to three percent of our bodyweight per week.

Many of us have unrealistic weight loss goals and try to lose weight too rapid. When we do not see results fast we get discouraged and ultimately give up. Take your time and lose weight gradually.

Even though you cannot  spot reduce fat, there are nutrition and fitness ways that are effective for losing weight in the most proportional way possible. Shapiro recommended a nutrition plan that consists of high-fiber foods, lean proteins, and healthy fats at every meal.

“Visualize [your] plate and cut it in half. Make sure half the plate is full of plants, fruits, and veggies at every meal,” she advised. “Then cut the other half into quarters, and make sure one-quarter is protein and one-quarter is whole grains.”

It is great to be committed but if you ever fall off track do not beat yourself up. Just get back on the course next time and be consistent. Do not let one mistake affect your weight loss goal.

When it comes to workouts, a combination of strength training and high intensity cardio exercises is the best fitness routine to lose body fat. Strength training three to five times per week improves metabolic function and body composition according to Lambert. You increase your caloric deficit by including cardio workouts in your fat loss routine.

When we have a goal to lose weight and body fat, is it easy to be strictly focused on losing weight as fast as possible. Unfortunately, it is not healthy or effective to maintain weight loss that way. If we focus on good nutrition and daily exercise as a lifestyle, we are more likely to lose weight and belly fat in a healthy manner and keep if off.

Source: Flynn, C. “Why You’re Losing Weight but Not Belly Fat — and What to Do About It” www. Popsugar.com 16 May 2018

Leeman Taylor
B.S. Criminal Justice

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