Not too long ago, everyone thought we needed to do hours of cardio and thousands of crunches to lose belly fat. Then some doomsayers came along and said that some of us were wired to store more belly fat than others and we ought to just quit trying so hard. Fortunately, the most recent and most respected research has proven that there’s a lot more to losing belly fat quickly than starving or working ourselves to death in the gym. The best news? Anyone can do it, no matter how they’re “wired”.
You do still need to work out, but not for hours per day. You should still do crunches or other ab moves, but not nearly as many as you thought. You probably do need to cut back on calories, but you don’t need to cut back on eating. One of the most important findings? Hormones have a lot to do with losing belly fat quickly and you can take control of those hormones.
Hormones: Control them to Lose Belly Fat Quickly
Hormones are a little bit like the body’s soldiers; the brain signals hormones to be released into the bloodstream and go get a certain job done. Some hormones are multi-taskers and some are focused on one thing. Two hormones that have a huge impact on losing belly fat quickly or keeping it on indefinitely are cortisol and insulin. If you want to lose belly fat quickly and permanently, you need to regain control of these hormones.
Most people know that insulin has something to do with blood sugar and diabetes. Some of you may have heard about insulin resistance and how it leads to belly fat and is even an indication of future Type 2 diabetes. This is all true. While you don’t need to know everything there is to know about insulin, you do need to know how it works and how to get it working for you.
Your body converts food (primarily carbohydrates) into glucose (a form of sugar) so that it can use it for energy. Every single cell in your body uses glucose to some degree, but muscle cells use it most. However, glucose can’t pass through a cell’s wall by itself. It’s like it doesn’t have security clearance. Insulin has a full body clearance, so when your body senses a quantity of glucose in the blood, it send insulin out to transport it into your cells.
If your metabolism is messed up, either through disease or poor eating habits, your cells become resistant to insulin. They ignore insulin’s security clearance, and glucose is left to wander through the bloodstream. This is called high blood sugar. Where does this come into play in the discussion of belly fat? Your body won’t allow all that glucose to just run around the bloodstream. Since it can’t get it into the muscle and organ cells, it converts it into fat and stores it…..yes, in the abdomen.
Cortisol is a stress hormone. It exists solely to direct the storage of belly fat in times of crisis or famine. This was helpful in the caveman days and it could be helpful if you were stranded on a deserted island. However, few of us are faced with the threat of starvation on a daily basis. The problem is, we are under a great deal of stress and we also tend to skip meals quite a bit. Both of these things send a shot of cortisol into the bloodstream, where it’s in charge of taking the fat we eat and storing it for later instead of allowing it to be used as fuel.
So How Do You Control These Hormones?
This is where the news gets really good. You can make a huge impact on these hormones and lose belly fat quickly by reducing the effects of stress and by eating a lot. Yes, you should eat more food and more often. You should also sleep more, laugh more and relax more. Here’s why.
Studies have shown that skipping meals, or even going a few hours between meals, releases a heavy hit of both insulin and cortisol. By eating first thing in the morning and then eating several snacks and small meals every couple of hours, you’ll keep your blood sugar steady and keep your brain from thinking that there’s a food shortage. Without that release of cortisol, your body will see no reason to store more fat. Not only that, it will see no reason to keep the belly fat that’s already stored, and will start turning it back into glucose and burning it for energy.
Recent research has also shown that lack of sleep and irregular sleep causes a hefty release of cortisol. People who sleep less than six hours a night have as much as 20% more belly fat and an extra six inches on their waistline than people who sleep eight hours a night. So sleep a minimum of eight hours, every night.
Another powerful tool for getting your hormones on your side and losing belly fat quickly is Vitamin C. Vitamin C not only combats the effects of stress on your body (lowering the amount of cortisol released), it also stimulates the production of carnitine. Carnitine is the taxi driver for fat. It takes fat from storage to where it can be used for energy, or burned. Take a minimum of 500mg, twice per day, and you’ll see amazing results within a week or two.
Now that you know how to lose belly fat quickly, use this knowledge to get motivated, make some painless lifestyle changes and achieve the body and the healthy lifestyle you want and deserve. Combine these tips with a healthy, balanced diet and at least moderate, regular exercise and you will see a dramatic difference in the amount of belly fat on your body.
Now that you know it’s easier than you thought, there’s no reason to sit on the sidelines any longer. Get out there and enjoy all that a healthy lifestyle has to offer.