You might think that Buddha belly is an achievement bestowed by Budweiser, or it’s how a Dad should look as they age, but the sad fact is you’re wearing a red flag that something is deathly wrong. Men with belly fat are in the highest category for heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and yes, an early grave. If you have belly fat then it needs to go, fast. Your family is depending on you.
As you age, you lose muscle — especially if you are not physically active. Loss of muscle mass decreases the rate at which your body uses calories, which can make it more challenging to maintain a healthy weight. In addition, in some men, fat cells in the arms and legs lose the ability to store fat, which causes any excess fat to go to the abdomen. (1)
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The Belly Fat Test
Drinking excess alcohol can cause you to gain belly fat — the “beer belly.” However, beer alone isn’t to blame. Drinking too much alcohol of any kind can increase belly fat, although some research suggests wine might be an exception. (2) A combination of poor diet, lack of exercise, and decreased Testosterone all account for the increased visceral fat that deposits around your midsection.
If you are wondering if you have too much belly fat, a simple test you can do at home will give you a good indication of whether you need to slim down or not.
1) Standing up, measure your belly from around your hip bone
2) Pull the tape measure until it fits snug against your bare skin
3) Check that the tape measure is level all the way around
4) Relax, exhale, and adjust as needed
5) Record the date and results
Men who have a circumference of more than 40 inches (102 centimeters) are at the greatest risk of health conditions. Losing just 2 inches from your belly can reduce this risk by 20%!
How to Get Rid of Belly Fat
As belly fat is a visceral fat, it responds to dietary changes. Working out in the gym will help, but it won’t budge the belly. You should use a combination treatment to reach a better physical state. All men benefit from cardio, lifting weights, and eating healthy. If you drink alcohol, cut down. The less you drink the fewer calories you will consume and the less likely you will be to gain belly fat.
- Eat Healthy Foods – This might sound obvious, but visceral fat is a new fat brought on by our junk food diets and desire for convenience. It is easily cured with a plant-based diet high in whole grains and low fat dairy products.
- Maintain Portion Control – A large belly is an indication of an overzealous appetite. Keep portions in check by eating three meals a day, and three calorie controlled snacks. Do not eat to clear your plate, instead, work on listening to your body.
- Increase Your Cardio – To blast through visceral fat it is important to increase your cardio. You need to achieve at least 150 minutes a week, in two sessions of 75 minutes, doing a brisk walk or more to achieve results. This should be in addition to any strength training.
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