WE HAVE THIS WEIRD KIND OF RELATIONSHIP WITH OUR "WEIGHT".
We hear it all the time. "Muscle weighs more than fat". "Go with how your clothes fit, not the number on the scale".
And yet, we continue to use the scale as a measurement of success.
What you weigh can matter to your health but only to a certain extent. It doesn't define you (obviously).
Instead, let's take a look at your waist circumference (well...you look at yours and I'll look at mine).
WAIST CIRCUMFERENCE (AKA "BELLY FAT")
Do you remember the fruity body shape descriptions comparing you to an “apple” or a “pear”? The apple is round around the middle. You know – belly fat-ish, kinda beer belly-ish. And the pear is rounder around the hips and thighs.
THAT is what we're talking about here.
Do you know which shape is associated with a higher health risks? Sleep apnea, insulin resistance, diabetes, high blood pressure, blood fat, and arterial diseases. You know, all the fun ones.
Yup – that apple!
And it's not because of the fat under your skin that you may refer to as a “muffin top”. The health risk is due to the fat covering the organs in the abdomen.
This internal fat is called “visceral fat” and that's where a lot of the problem actually is. It's this “un-pinchable” fat.
Visceral fat releases fatty acids, inflammatory compounds and hormones. These all have a huge impact on your blood fats, blood sugars, and blood pressure. That's more blood then a U2 chores.
Apple-shaped people tend to have a lot more of this hidden visceral fat than the pear-shaped people do. So as you can see, where you store your fat is more important that how much you weigh.
So stop cursing the weight around your thighs, ladies. Pull out some of that Queen B confidence and strut yo' stuff.
And if it turns out you are an apple instead of a pear, don't fret. With a few key shifts to your diet, you can cut most of these health risks. Not to mention that spare tire around your midsection.
AM I AN APPLE OR A PEAR?
It's pretty simple to find out if you're in the higher risk category or not. The easiest way is to measure your waist circumference with a measuring tape. You can do it right now.
Women, if your waist is 35” or more you could be considered to have “abdominal obesity”, putting you in the higher risk category. Pregnant ladies are exempt, of course.
For men the number is 40”.
Of course this isn't a diagnostic tool. There are lots of risk factors for chronic diseases. Waist circumference is just one of them.
If you have concerns definitely see your doctor.
EASY TIPS TO REDUCE BELLY FAT
● Fiber Up! Fiber helps you feel full, binds to toxins, and reduces the amount of calories you absorb from your food. . Try brussel sprouts, flax seeds, chia seeds, avocado, and blackberries.
● Add more protein to your day. It reduces your appetite and makes you feel fuller longer. Bonus: it helps to build lean muscle which in turn will burn MORE fat (even when you are sitting on your butt binge watching OITNB).
● Nix added sugars. Ditch the processed sweetened foods especially those sweet drinks (even 100% pure juice).
● Move more. Sweat a little each day. Lift some weights. Walk and take the stairs. It all adds up.
● Stress less. Seriously! Elevated levels of cortisol increase appetite and drive abdominal fat. So chill the F out, girl!
● Get more sleep. Try making this a priority and seeing how much better you feel (and look).
Pick a couple of these tips and start using them right away. I want to hear about which ones are working for you so pop over to our FB page and leave me a comment.
P.S. I am working on a step by step program to get rid of belly fat for good. If you want help losing the belly fat, email me to schedule a free 20 minute call to see if the program is a good fit for you.