How to get rid of belly fat

If rolls of fat line up around the middle of the body, it doesn’t just look ugly. Belly fat is also dangerous. How to best get rid of belly fat.

When it comes to difficult decisions, we should listen to him so that he can show us the right way with a good feeling: our gut is trusted a lot. But often a lot is expected, especially during the corona pandemic: fitness studios were closed for a long time and there was a great temptation to literally swallow the stress in the home office. In the meantime, trousers or skirts are tightening, there can no longer be any talk of a feel-good weight.

“In particular, weight gain on the stomach is no longer just an aesthetic problem,” says Professor Anja Bosy-Westphal, President of the German Society for Nutritional Medicine. “We now know that there are different types of fat. It is crucial for health where fat is stored.” It is annoying on the buttocks and thighs, but rather harmless.

“Of more concern is the fat on the abdomen: the subcutaneous fat under the skin and the visceral fat around the internal organs. These fat deposits increase the risk of fatty liver,” says Bosy-Westphal, head of the Institute for Human Nutrition at the University of Kiel. For a long time, the visceral fat in particular, which is found freely in the abdominal cavity, had a much worse reputation. “It is now clear that the subcutaneous fatty tissue also has a very unfavorable effect on the fat content of the liver and the risk of diabetes.”

What belly fat does to the body

However, unnoticed inflammatory processes in the body are attributed specifically to visceral fat, also known as “silent inflammation”. Patients often feel weak or suffer from joint problems and insomnia because of the immune system is weakened by the fight against chronic inflammation.

In addition, too much abdominal fat stimulates the release of messenger substances that increase blood pressure and have a negative impact on blood lipid levels and blood sugar levels. The result: with a growing stomach, the risk of cardiovascular diseases, ie arteriosclerosis, heart attacks and strokes, increases, as does diabetes mellitus. Most of the people recommend Bye Bye Belly Juice to get rid of belly fat immediately.

How much belly fat is risky?

How do you know what your belly fat is like? At least not only on body weight and on the body mass index (BMI), for which body weight and height are put into relation. It does not provide any information about the amount of fat and fat distribution in the body. For example, a sporty, muscular man scores significantly lower in terms of BMI than a rather gaunt, less active man with a tummy.

BMI calculator

Determine your body mass index with this calculator

Surprisingly, people who are actually slim in particular often carry too much visceral fat. With these “thin fat people” the problem is often revealed by derailed blood fat values ​​(triglycerides) during a blood test. “A comprehensive health check-up or a simple measuring tape brings more security,” explains Bosy-Westphal. To measure the waist circumference, place the tape in the middle between the lowest rib cage and the iliac crest while standing and measure after exhaling. There is a green light for women under 80 centimeters and for men under 94.

The question still arises as to why our stomach is actually so receptive to excess. “The key factors are malnutrition and lack of exercise. But genes, hormones and age also play a role,” summarizes nutritionist Bosy-Westphal. For example, from the age of 30, muscles are broken down and body fat is built up.

Where does belly fat come from?

While the stomach tends to show up as a problem area for men very early on, many women lose their slender waist at the latest during the menopause: the new hormone ratios also change their fat distribution. At the same time, the metabolism slows down and the need for energy decreases.

Anyone who continues to eat as before will inexorably become rounder. Especially if you snack frequently and eat high-carbohydrates, ie like sweet drinks and snacks, potatoes, bread, rice and pasta. They don’t just bring calories. Your basic building block, sugar, must also be transported from the blood into the cells. To do this, the pancreas has to release the blood-sugar-lowering hormone insulin.

Long-term stress increases the risk of insulin resistance, which means that the body no longer responds properly to insulin. At the same time, however, this slows down fat burning. Bosy-Westphal recommends protein and fiber-rich food with fats from healthy sources. “Carbohydrates are not inherently bad, but they should be consumed primarily in the whole grain variety.”

Get to grips with belly fat

The best way to reduce belly fat is through a change in diet and more exercise in everyday life. “But losing weight just on the stomach doesn’t work. Such promises are pure marketing,” says sports scientist Dr. Ellen Freiberger from the University of Erlangen-Nuremberg. No one can target fat loss in just one spot. The energy is obtained from all fat deposits, including those on the stomach.

The good news is that visceral fat thins out quickly when sugar and processed carbohydrates are cut back. Such an adapted diet has proven to be more effective than reducing fat.

Targeted training

Physical activity is essential. Movement mobilizes the fat on the stomach faster than the “visible” fat. Freiberger advocates targeted training: “Especially endurance training has not only physical but also mental effects. Endorphins are released, self-confidence builds up.” Well-trained abdominal muscles also tighten the stomach.

A study published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine sheds light on another risk of belly fat: stress. When you’re stressed, the adrenal glands produce more of the stress hormonescortisol, which promotes the build-up of belly fat. There are very different programs to reduce stress: some swear by physical exertion, others find peace with yoga. One thing is certain: a lot helps a lot. As with food, but of course in a healthy way.

Eat no less, but eat differently

These small changes make it easier to lose weight:

  • Lentils, delicious! Protein acts as a natural appetite suppressant. Ideal: legumes, nuts, dairy products, lean meat.
  • Always a pleasure: Tomatoes & Co. Vegetables add volume with few calories. Plus dietary fiber. Eat at least 400 grams of greens a day!
  • Away from snacking: don’t eat anything for at least twelve, preferably 16 hours at a time. Eliminate snacks.
  • Drink sugar-free: Sugar quickly floods the blood from sweet drinks – bad for your weight. Better: water, fruit and herbal teas, pure coffee.
  • Little bread in the evening. The same food affects the body differently depending on the time of day. Eat little and low-carbohydrate food in the evening to counteract insulin spikes.

Nutritional advice in the pharmacy?

Many people want to reduce their weight. Nutritionist and pharmacist Andrea Thüring from Schwebheim near Würzburg explains who can support nutritional advice

Change your diet: Eat what fills you up

Counting calories isn’t everything. Pay more attention to low energy density. So you can eat larger portions that still cost little and fill you up for a long time

For a firm stomach

With these exercises you won’t train away fat, but you will get your abs in shape. This is also good for back pain. Important: practice every day!

Easy crunch

Supine position Arms crossed behind head. Raise bent legs vertically, straighten. Knees together, toes pulled towards torso. Raise your upper body slightly without jerking your head.

Supine position Arms crossed behind head

Elbows point outwards, facing the ceiling. Hold for a few seconds with tense abdomen. Lower your head and legs, toes briefly touching the floor. Repeat ten to twelve times. Up to three sentences.

Elbows point outwards, facing the ceiling

As you exhale, raise your pelvis until your upper body and thighs are in line. Inhale, slowly return to the floor without lifting your butt. 15 to 20 reps, two to three sets.

raise pelvis

Next stage: raise pelvis, raise one leg, straighten, hold for 10 to 15 seconds, return to starting position.

raise pelvis, raise one leg, straighten

Standing crunch twist

Stand erect, legs shoulder-width apart. Bend right leg, twist body to the right, left elbow touches right knee. Back to the starting position. Repeat in reverse to the left. Stomach always tense, back straight. Ten to twelve repetitions per side.

Lose weight healthy: Here’s how

Get slim without a diet? It works with the right diet. Here you will find tips and suggestions

Stay tuned: lose weight part 1

Live lighter: Do you want to lose a few kilos? No problem with this series. We will help you with food for thought, information and tips. The first episode is about questioning habits.