The Best Way To Burn Belly Fat If You’re Over 40
One thing to note if you’re a 40+ woman: losing belly fat naturally might be harder than before. Let us introduce you to a new word: somatopause. It refers to the time in your life when the growth hormone somatotropin begins to decline, something that happens once you hit your 40s.
Combined with declining levels of oestrogen and progesterone, fat storage will also tend to move from your hips and thighs to your stomach. But, this isn’t the time to go HAM on HIIT workouts. Kate Rowe-Ham, personal trainer and founder of the Fit Hut in Sussex advises focussing on resistance training to build muscle tissue that’ll support your metabolism as you age.
‘You cant spot-reduce fat,’ says Rowe-Ham, referring to the myth of removing fat from specific parts of your body. ‘Increasing lean body mass by building muscle is the most sustainable way forward if healthy weight loss is the goal.’
Snack On Tart Cherries
That sour cherry is pretty sweet when it comes to your health. The results of a study conducted at the University of Michigan found that rats given high-fat foods along with tart cherries ditched nine percent more body fat than those in a control group over just 12 weeks. Cherries are also a good source of antioxidant pigment resveratrol, which has been linked to reductions in belly fat, dementia risk, and lower rates of macular degeneration among the elderly.
Bonus Round: Losing Belly Fat After Having A Baby
Its totally normal for your belly to feel loose or jiggly in the early days and weeks after giving birth. In addition to pregnancy weight gain, your abdominal muscles were stretched to the max to accommodate your growing bundle of joy.
Losing belly fat postpartum starts with the same strategies youd use to lose belly fat at any other time: Eat a little less and exercise more.
It may not happen overnight, but its reasonable to be back to your prepregnancy weight by the time your baby reaches their first birthday.
Does that mean your lower belly will look the same as it did before you got pregnant? Not necessarily. For some women, pregnancy causes the abdominal muscles to separate and create a noticeable bulge, even after theyve fully recovered from giving birth.
This condition, called diastasis recti, is fixable with abdominal exercises. A physical therapist can help you get the hang of them. Just ask your healthcare provider for a recommendation they can point you in the right direction.
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When To Seek Relief
Most minor fluctuations in gas and bowel habits are normal, but if you experience excessive or persistent gas or bloating, its time to seek medical attention, cautions van der Linden. A little gas is probably healthy, but a lot of gas, that could be a problem, he says.
Talk to your doctor if gas symptoms change suddenly, become severe, begin to interfere with your normal activities or are accompanied by other symptoms. A physical exam, stool tests, blood tests and imaging tests, which may include an endoscopy or colonoscopy, might be performed to help rule out or diagnose an underlying health issue. Your physician will also review your symptoms and family history and may recommend keeping a food journal or eliminating certain foods from your diet.
Dietary changes, such as eating more slowly, not gulping food or drinks and avoiding or limiting certain foods or beverages, can help relieve some uncomfortable symptoms. Adding even small bouts of exercise to your day can help push gas through your system and ease bloating. Stress management techniques, like yoga or meditation, can help keep you from unintentionally swallow air when youre talking, which can happen when youre upset or nervous.
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Eat Slowly So You Don’t Gulp Air
When you finally get home after a long day, you’re totally famishedwe get it. But that doesn’t mean you should scarf down your dinner in a hurry. Eating too quickly causes you to swallow excess air, which can lead to uncomfortable gas and bloating. Slowing down the chewing with your mouth closed, on the other hand, can have the opposite effect. Fight off the urge to engorge your entire meal by snacking on something like a small piece of fruit or an ounce of nuts before dinner is ready.
Think Eating Plan Not Diet
Ultimately, you need to pick a healthy eating plan you can stick to,Stewart says. The benefit of a low-carb approach is that it simply involveslearning better food choicesno calorie-counting is necessary. In general,a low-carb way of eating shifts your intake away from problem foodsthosehigh in carbs and sugar and without much fiber, like bread, bagels andsodasand toward high-fiber or high-protein choices, like vegetables, beansand healthy meats.
What Causes Too Much Stomach Acid
Most people who experience excessive stomach acid symptoms complain about a burning sensation from the start. Well look at excess stomach acid symptoms in detail, but first, lets consider what causes excessive stomach acid.
Acid can build up in the stomach due to diet, excessive alcohol consumption, abnormally high acid production, or it can simply be hereditary. When excess stomach acid goes untreated, it can lead to ulcers. Diet plays a big role in controlling stomach acid too. There are certain foods that cause more acid and others that are better tolerated. Heres a look at what causes excess stomach acid, starting with food.
In most cases, symptoms of excess stomach acid can be attributed to diet. It can be helpful for people to keep a food journal, which enables them to pinpoint what food or foods are bothersome. Once certain culprits are identified, it is simply a matter of eliminating those foods from the diet to find relief.
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You Haven’t Got The Right Exercise Balance
With all the different tips out there, it can be tricky to understand exactly which exercises work the best. “HIIT is great for fat burning and will get your heart rate up, but I’d also recommend including strength and resistance exercises too,” shares Dr Luke. “Try lifting weights, using resistance bands or using the weight machines at the gym as these will increase your metabolism to help with weight loss, and increase your muscle strength. It’s important to mix-up your whole-body workouts so you don’t get bored.”
Is It Ever A Good Idea To Try To Kill Bad Bacteria In The Gut
Here are two instances in which you should seek advice from a professional on how to gently and systematically weed unwanted microbes from your gut:
After a stool test has identified a potentially problematic overgrowth
A comprehensive stool test reveals the levels of key bacterial species in your lower intestine , as well as the presence of candida and other yeasts. Our most advanced test also checks for parasites and levels of inflammation in the lower gut, along with many other intestinal health biomarkers. For this test, you provide a small sample of your stool that you send to a lab for analysis.
Because a stool test can tell us which specific bacteria and yeasts are present at higher levels than normal, its possible to use specific antimicrobial herbs that have some evidence behind their ability to eradicate particular types of bacteria and yeasts . The science isnt perfect on this yet, but it does give practitioners a better chance of getting rid of problematic overgrowths without causing too much collateral damage.
After a breath test has confirmed SIBO
SIBO stands for small intestinal bacterial overgrowth, which, like it sounds, is the presence of too many bacteria in your small intestine, which should harbour very low levels of bacteria compared to the large intestine . If you have the symptoms of SIBO, a health practitioner may recommend a SIBO test. Symptoms include:
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Flavor Your Food With Garlic
A little garlic in your meals could mean a lot less weight around your middle. The results of a Korean study found that mice given a high-fat diet supplemented with garlic lost significantly more weight and abdominal fat than those who just ate fatty foods. Even better, they also improved their liver health, making it easier to stay healthy and burn off that excess fat in the long term. For more flavorful ways to make your food more enjoyable, turn to the metabolism-boosting spicy recipes and watch those pounds melt away.
What Is Belly Fat
First things first. Before we talk about how to get rid of belly fat or how to lose belly fat, its important to know exactly what belly fat is.
‘Belly fat or abdominal fat is the subcutaneous fat that sits around the waist and provides a store of energy, and also protection and heat, for the organs,’ says Tarik Belalij, personal trainer and nutritionist at Everyone Active Becontree Leisure Centre.
‘Small amounts of fat below the skin is normal and healthy, it is the visceral fat, which surrounds the organs that can be the most dangerous type of fat leading to heart attacks and diabetes.’
How do you know if youve got this type of fat situation going on? ‘Excessive visceral fat is what causes the “beer gut” , pushing the stomach out from the inside,’ Belalij says. So, to reiterate, were not talking bloating, which comes and goes, we’re talking about actual belly fat tissue.
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Stop Drinking Your Calories
Regularly sipping stuff other than water, black coffee, or unsweetened tea? Calorie-containing drinks can slow or straight-up stall your weight loss progress, making it almost impossible to get rid of lower belly fat.
Case in point? That 16-ounce latte you get with breakfast can pack about 250 calories. Grab a sugary cocktail after work and youre looking at 300, 400, or even 500 more.
If you have those kinds of drinks on the reg, just cutting them out could be enough to start melting fat all over your body including around your lower belly.
Thats especially true when it comes to booze, since research shows that drinking a lot of alcohol seems to cause fat to be stored around your belly. Dorn JM, et al. . Alcohol drinking patterns differentially affect central adiposity as measured by abdominal height in women and men,
Monitor Your Eating With A Food Diary
Try out a free food diary app like MealLogger, MyNetDiary, iEatBetter, and MyFitnessPal. These apps make it easy to keep track of your meals, nutrients, and calories right from your phone. If you prefer a pen and paper, that works too! You can purchase a simple notebook and manually keep track of what you’re eating each day.
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Why Does Belly Fat Usually Form
Weight gain as a whole is a little complicated but belly fat typically forms from consuming too many calories, which causes weight gain, says Keri Gans, R.D., author of The Small Change Diet. That said, you really cant control where fat accumulates in your body. We have practically no control on where that weight goes, Gans says. It usually ends up on our belly or hips and thighs based on ones genetics, sex, and/or age.
Gaining weight quickly raises the odds that youll develop more belly fat, says Jessica Cording, R.D., author of The Little Book of Game-Changers. But different body types are more prone to storing fat tissue around the midsection, she says.
Certain other factors, like not getting enough sleep or being stressed out can also raise your risk of developing more belly fat, Cording says. Higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol has been shown to promote more accumulation of fat tissue around the midsection, she explains.
You’re Consuming Too Much Sugar
“If your diet consists of lots of sports drinks, sugar-sweetened drinks like fizzy coca cola and flavoured waters, or sugary foods like chocolate and cakes, it will make losing weight harder,” Dr Luke reckons. He also explains that while whole fruits and vegetables are undoubtedly good for you, they can also sometimes cause weight gain if you eat too much, as they have high levels of natural sugars in them. “Low-fat food options might have high amounts of added sugar in there too, so make sure to check the food label”, he warns.
Plus, cutting back on the amount of simple carbohydrates you eat, like pasta and bread, and substituting for healthier alternatives, like courgetti, could help with weight loss. “It wont be easy, but by dropping your overall carbohydrate intake , you will have the best chance of tackling your belly fat,” shares Dr Luke.
However, Emily has a slightly different take on this one. She explains that, while Dr Luke isn’t wrong in saying that, nutritionally speaking, the above foods aren’t as nutritionally-dense, they won’t ultimately affect weight loss if you’re still maintaining a calorie deficit. “I’m a big believer that you don’t need to cut out foods or become consumed with ‘good’ and ‘bad’ labels when it comes to your nutrition,” she shares.
See, you don’t have to cut out the foods you love. It’s all about moderation.
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Skip Your Morning Cup Of Coffee
As much as we love the benefits of coffee, drinking it when you’re trying to get rid of belly bloat in 24 hours or less is a no-no.
“Consuming beverages that are high in sugar or caffeine can not only be dehydrating but, in some cases, can add to excess calorie intake, too,” explains Smith. When your body is dehydrated, it will hold onto water, which causes excessive bloating.
Remedies And Treatments For Stomach Pain And Gas
Most stomach pain and gas will go away on its own, but there are steps you can take to ease discomfort and prevent future gas pain. Gas-related stomach pain remedies include:
The only way to get rid of gas is to pass it. Donât hold it in. If youâre worried about odor, try reducing foods that contain sulfur-producing compounds such as broccoli, cabbage, and beer.
Many gas-relieving products are marketed, but scientific evidence of their effectiveness is limited. Many people claim to experience relief, so they may be worth trying. The most common medications that claim to relieve immediate symptoms are activated charcoal and simethicone .
Peppermint and peppermint oil have the best record as digestive aids, but there are many other foods that may help. In one study, Chinese herbal formulae outperformed placebos in soothing IBS symptoms. Commonly included ingredients are:
- Wearing ill-fitting dentures
Enzymes Before Eating Certain Foods
Taking enzymes before you eat can help you better digest your meal. Most enzymes are only available for those with a medical condition that prevents them from producing their own. However, two widely available enzymes for problematic foods are:
- Lactase supplements can help those who are lactose intolerant.
- Alpha-galactosidase supplements can help people digest legumes.
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You’re Not Tracking Your Progress
Another important point from Dr Luke. While every person is different and what weight loss plan works for them will be different, tracking your progress can serve as an encouraging reminder that what you are doing is working.
“There are some great apps and wearable tech devices available that make it easier to stick to your plan. They can help you monitor your goals, your food intake and the calories burned during exercise. If these arent an option, write down a meal and exercise plan. This will help you stick to your goals and remain focussed,” he explains.
Best Ways To Camouflage A Beer Belly
If you want to make your beer belly less noticeable as you make these lifestyle changes, here are a few quick tips:
- Wear loose clothing, such as flowy blouses and button-up shirts. Tight clothes, such as muscle shirts, can accentuate the belly area.
- Try dark colors for pants and shorts and lighter colors for shirts. This may provide a more proportioned look, since beer bellies can make legs look extra skinny. However, in general, darker clothes from top to bottom can help make any extra weight less noticeable.
- Dont tuck in your shirt.
- Wear vertical stripes, if youre going to wear stripes at all.
- Choose tailored pants, or simply pants that flatter your lower half. This will help with your overall appearance.
- High-rise jeans and other pants are a better choice than low-rise ones.
- Wear single-color shirts or blouses.
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Keep Track Of What You Eat And Your Exercise
Studies show that by keeping a food diary and logging your exercise, youre setting yourself up for success.
For people who are trying to lose weight, if they self-monitor their food and exercise, they tend to do better, says Dr. Creel. We dont know all the reasons why, but what it probably comes down to is awareness and being intentional about our health behaviors.
And using fitness trackers, whether its a smart watch or an app, can motivate you to lace up those sneakers and take a walk around the block.