Reducing the waistline and getting a toned midsection is probably one the biggest driving factors for most overweight people to toil in the gym. Based on all your research, you know that making healthy food choices and exercising regularly can get you there. But sometimes, no matter how hard you’ve been working, the stubborn belly fat never seems to go. Here are 5 reasons why most people are not able to burn away belly fat.
1. Your Hormones
While you might be beating yourself up for not being able to lead a healthier lifestyle, the culprit behind your belly fat could be hormones. This is more true for men than women. As men start to get older, levels of testosterone start to decrease and this can then result in the fat cells around the stomach area to expand.
Testosterone stops them from expanding, so as that reduces it becomes easier to gain stomach weight. As for women, when they’re younger, the body stores fat around hips and thighs for childbearing reasons. For older women who have been through menopause, the fat tends to redistribute to the belly because of changes in estrogen levels. The simple solution is to eat healthily and do resistance training.
2. Calories From The Wrong Sources
It’s not just about how many calories you consume. You also need to look at where those calories are coming from. Even if you control your calories intake and exercise six days a week, if the calories are coming from junk foods, it can make overall weight and abdominal fat harder to shift.
Eating a diet high in sugar, refined carbohydrates, and alcohol may lead to a fatty liver and weight gain around the midsection. If you’re serious about reducing belly fat, you need to really work on cutting sugar and refined carb. Eat three regular meals and include protein, complex carbs, and healthy fats to increase satiety.
3. Too Much Alcohol
It starts with just a couple of drinks over the weekend with friends and before you know it, you have downed an entire crate of beer. Socializing and drinking have become inextricably linked making it hard for most people to give up or cut down their alcohol intake.
Alcoholic drinks can exceed 240 calories each, which is the same as a slice of pizza or a bar of chocolate. If you’re having four or more drinks, that’s adding a huge 956 calories or more to your diet. If you’re working hard at the gym all week to get that belly off, don’t let a few drinks come in the way. Reduce alcohol to 1–2 drinks weekly.
4. Hormone Imbalance
Hormone imbalance can be a cause for your inability to lose weight, especially for women. Hormonal imbalance, such as estrogen and androgen imbalance, may increase the likelihood of thickening around the midsection. One common hormonal disorder is polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which is characterized by several symptoms caused by high levels of androgens, or ‘male’ hormones.
PCOS can be responsible for insulin resistance where glucose ends up being deposited in fat cells rather than being used for producing energy. If you think you’re doing everything right and are still not able to lose weight, talk to your doctor to find out if you may have a hormone imbalance.
5. Trying To Spot Reduce
The media loves to talk about how celebs got their six packs by doing hundreds of crunches every single day. While it is possible to do that many crunches, no one tells you about the other dietary and lifestyle changes that are required to get washboard abs. This creates an impression in people’s minds that building abs is all about doing as many crunches as you can.
But science begs to differ. You cannot focus weight loss on just one particular area of your body. Strengthening the core and abs can help to tighten and tone the muscles in the abdominal area but your abs are going to be hidden under a layer of fat if you do not reduce your overall body fat percentage. Don’t limit yourself to ab exercises only. Full body exercises are more effective for reducing fat including your belly fat.