Who didn’t say aaaahhhh at a round baby belly? Who doesn’t want to squeeze that sweetness? But as we age and we see that belly returning, it’s not so sweet, is it?
New research suggests that abdominal work-outs alone do not address subcutaneous or visceral fat in the abdomen known to us as belly fat. Let’s start using strategies that reduce Cortisol production instead. Cortisol is a hormone found naturally in our bodies that depletes our lean muscle while holding on to that stubborn fat in the abdomen.
Two ways we can normalize Cortisol levels are to reduce stress in our lives and to get more sleep. We are only just learning how important regulating our circadian clock really is. Recently at The University of Chicago, researchers found that dieters who slept for 8.5 hours lost 55 percent more body fat over the course of two weeks than dieters who only got 5.5 hours of sleep at night!
We are finding that we need to follow the 80/20 rule to truly lose belly fat and keep it off. 80% of our ability to reduce belly fat is determined by what we eat, and 20% is determined by exercise, sleep and stress reduction. Basically this means that no matter how many crunches we do, if we end the day with a bag of chips or a tub of fro-yo, we are never going to have the abs we dream of. Especially if we eat those chips before getting only a few hours of shut-eye!
If we only incorporate a few changes into our daily routine, we will see some real changes in how we look and feel. First, let’s try eliminating as much sugar as possible from our diets. This includes even natural sugars such as agave and honey. Many allegedly healthy foods such as fruits and yogurts are loaded with sugars. Energy and sports drinks are full of sugar! Grains also break down into sugars so they should be limited as well. And don’t be fooled by words like organic and whole-grain. Our body only reads: sugar sugar sugar! Replace processed foods with raw veggies. Increase healthy fats such as those found in wild salmon, avocado and walnuts.
Dr. Bob Stowe, a Functional Medicine Doctor has joined Radiance and is available for consultations. Through testing, Cortisol can be measured and Dr. Stowe can help you manage Cortisol levels and lose that belly fat. When combined with our medical weight loss program, we can help you slim down and be healthy. At Radiance, we offer a great selection of vitamins and supplements including Designs for Health OmegAvail Ultra which provides 2400 mg of omega-3 per day. Whole food powders are extremely beneficial to those who don’t like raw foods. Radiance offers Designs for Health’s PaleoGreens Organic Powder and Designs for Health PaleoReds Strawberry Powder for the whole food boost we all need.
Don’t forget, Radiance supports Primal Personal Training/Primal Athletic Performance, where David Gentile and his Chek Certified Trainers and Holistic Lifestyle Coaches are available to teach you the right kind of core exercises to keep that belly fat at bay forever!