Of course you know that protein’s for a slimmer you and essential for losing belly fat—you couldn’t have made it through the Paleo and South Beach crazes without hearing all about it. But here’s why protein really needs to play a prime roll on your plate: “Your body starts to produce more insulin as you age, since your muscle and fat cells aren’t responding to it properly,” explains Louis Aronne, MD, Director of the Obesity Clinic at Cornell. And insulin promotes fat storage, especially around your belly (yippee!).
This is why, when you start a fat loss regimen, you see immediate results in certain areas of your body like your chest, arms, and face, but next-to-nothing in other areas like your stomach, hips, and thighs.
Your muscles need extra calories to maintain themselves, so more of the food you eat will be feeding your muscles instead of your trouble spots. Your conditioned heart (from the cardiovascular stuff) is more effective at burning calories as well, so you have the golden combination there.
I’ve been doing advanced HIIT-type workouts for a couple of years now and after an overseas move (and turning 31) I can’t seem to get back to my normal weight (55-56kg), I was 53-54kg at peak fitness just over eighteen months ago. I’m around 57-58kg, 25-26% fat (Withings scales), doing HIIT 3-4hrs a week – mostly mornings before I eat and overall I eat very well, more protein than carbs etc.
While some people have an easier time than others, almost everyone has to deal with hunger and cravings to one degree or another. It’s just human nature to want to indulge in food after accidental or intentional deprivation, and whether it’s normal or not, it’s still interfering with your goals.
“Refined grains like white bread, crackers, and chips, as well as refined sugars in sweetened drinks and desserts increase inflammation in our bodies,” says Patton. “Belly fat is associated with inflammation, so eating too many processed foods will hinder your ability to lose belly fat.” Natural foods like fruits, vegetables, and whole grains are full of antioxidants, which have anti-inflammatory properties and may therefore actually prevent belly fat, Patton says.
Are you committed to the work needed to lose belly fat? “Reducing belly fat takes a combination approach of a low-calorie diet that is high in fiber and low in carbohydrates and sugar along with cardiovascular and weight training,” Dr. Kashyap says. “If you are willing to do the work, you can move past genetics and lose it.”
Many studies have shown that fat around the midsection can be incredibly dangerous for your health and can increase your risk of cancer, diabetes, heart problems and much more. The problem is that belly fat is a much more dangerous type of fat than the subcutaneous fat padding that you have around your entire body. Instead, it is visceral fat that lies deep within your midsection and surrounds your internal organs. If someone has 50 pounds of body fat that is spread all over their body, they will be much less at risk than someone who carries all of their excess fat in their stomach.
While slightly more nutritional than trans-fat, saturated fat from meat and dairy products can still result in unwanted body fat. You only need a small amount of it to benefit from its nutritional value.
At the end of the day, the greatest benefit of the Lean Belly Breakthrough program is a second chance in life. It would help you avoid or reverse the harmful effects of stubborn belly fat (e.g. diabetes and heart disease), so you can be healthier, feel stronger and achieve your goals in life.