Belly fat not only makes you clothes feel snug, but also affects your self-esteem. Fat that accumulates around the belly is termed as visceral fat and is a major risk factor for type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Though, it’s tough to get the much-desired flat stomach, certain life style changes coupled with daily exercise can help you reduce belly fat. 5 possible reasons you are gaining weight in the stomach area
1. Sedentary lifestyle
It has been identified as the cause for many lifestyle diseases plaguing the world right now. A survey in the US that spanned between 1988 and 2010 found that an inactive lifestyle led to significant weight gain and abdominal girth in men and women. It also makes you regain the belly fat even after losing weight. Do resistance and aerobic exercises to keep the bulge at bay.
2. Low-protein diets
While high-protein diets make you feel full and increase your metabolic rate, low-protein diets will make you gain belly fat over time. According to studies, people who consume high amounts of protein are less likely to have excess belly fat. In contrast, low protein intake increases secretion of the hunger hormone, Neuropeptide Y.
It’s common to gain belly fat during menopause. Post-menopause, the estrogen levels reduce significantly, causing visceral fat to be stored in the abdomen instead of the hips and thighs. The amount of weight gain, though, varies from one person to another.
4. Wrong gut bacteria
Gut health helps maintain a healthy immune system and avoid disease. An imbalance in gut bacteria—known as gut flora or microbiome—can increase the risk of diseases like type 2 diabetes, heart disease and cancer. Research suggests that an unhealthy balance of gut bacteria also promotes weight gain, including abdominal fat. Obese people have a higher number of Firmicutes bacteria in their system, which may increase the amount of calories absorbed from food.
There is a reason why you tend to eat more when stressed. A spike in the stress hormone, Cortisol, leads to hunger craving, which in turn leads to weight gain. However, instead of the excess calories being stored as fat all over the body, Cortisol promotes fat storage in the belly.