Excess abdominal fat is harmful in many ways. It has linkswith cancer, heart ailment, type 2 diabetes, metabolic diseases, and many other diseases.
Medically, fats that are not good for the body are called “visceral fats.” These fats are the ones that are found in the liver area, and some organs situated in the abdominal region.
People with normal weight are not exempted from surplus tummy fat, and so they are at risk of developing some ailment because of this.
Below are detailed 12 Habits That Contributes To Your Belly Fat.
Foods and Beverages with Excess Sugar
Some people consume excess sugar daily, but do not know. Sugar from candies, cakes, and those foods called “healthier” preferences, for example, chilled yogurts and muffins are high in sugar.
Even, Soda,sugar beverage, sweet tea, and flavored coffee are not left out of this. Studies inform that there is a relation between belly fat and sugar intake. The reason may be due to the high fructose contained in sugars, which serve as an additive (1).
Note that the normalsugar and the corn syrupthat is enriched with fructose contain a high proportion of fructose.
While the normalsugar we are known with contains 50% fructose, however, the corn syrup that is high in fructose contains 55% fructose.
A study conducted for 10-week among overweight and people with obesity, who eat 25% their consumed unit of energy from beverages sweetened with fructose while attempting to strike a balance in weight, showed a reduction in insulin responsiveness and an improvement in tummy fat (2).
Another study highlighted a decrease in burning of fat and metabolic speed among individual who did take a diet that is high in fructose (3).
It is understandable that sugar of any form increase body weight. Especially harmful is the beverages sweetened with sugar.
Also, be careful of sodas and some notable sweetened drinks, they contain more calories and makes you consume it within a minor time.
Importantly, studies have indicated that liquid calories do not exhibit equal action on appetite compared to solid calories.
Drinking liquid calories does not result in fullness and does not make you take little food as compensation (8, 9).
Fact: You may gain fat if you continue to take beverages and foods that are rich in sugar or contains corn syrup with high fructose.
Alcohol may be helpful in some areas, however, its health dangers are much.
If you consume as mall quantity of alcohol like red wine, the probability of suffering from strokeand heart attack may be reduced (10).
Although, consuming plenty of alcohol results in liver disease, inflammation, among other health dangers (11).
Many findings indicated that alcohol inhibits burning of fat, and result in storing of excess calories as tummy fat. This brought about “beer belly” (12).
Different studies say alcohol may be responsible for weight increase around the central area (android obesity).
Other studies have linked excessive alcohol consumption to obesity, obesity most times have been regarded as themother of all diseases.
A research discovered that men who take around three drinks daily had 80% possibility of developing excess tummy fat compared to those who do not take plenty of alcohol (13, 14).
Note that the amount of alcohol taken in a day increase body fat.
Another research said those who take alcohol daily but take less drink of it surprisingly have the least tummy fat, but people who do not consume alcohol every daybut take around four drinks anytime they drink had the most excess tummy fat (15).
Fact: Those who consume alcohol plenty have the tendency of developing diseases and have excess tummy fat.
Shun trans fats, they are the most unhygienic fats the universe has.
Trans fats are prepared through the mixing of unsaturated fats with hydrogen to bring about stability.
They are employed to increase the lives of industrially refined food like crackers, baking mixes,and muffins.
Findings reveal they are linked with inflammation, which results in heart disease, insulin opposition, among another ailment(16, 17, 18, 19).
When tested on animals, diets that contain trans fats were found to be a cause of excess abdominal fat (20, 21).
A study conducted for six years showed that monkeys that were nursed on an 8% trans fat food put on weight and had tummy fat increased to 33%. These monkeys gained belly fat compared to the monkeys nourished on 8% monounsaturated fat, even though the two sections got the same amount of calories for weight balance and maintenance (21).
Fact: Trans fats heighten inflammation, which may trigger insulin opposition and the secretion of tummy fat.
One of the biggest dangers to once existence and health is an inactive lifestyle (22).
People are already starting to be less active in recent time. Sedateness is tending to encourage obesity and tummy obesity.
Based on a survey carried out in the US between 1988 and 2010, it was highlighted that there is an exponential increase in idleness, weight, and tummy width in both male and female (23).
A separate research equated women that are accustomed to watching TV for over 3 Hours in a day to womenthat watched TV for less than an hour in the day.
Those that watched TV for more than 3 hours were said to be at risk of developing acute tummy obesity when equated to the second group that did not watch for a significant period on a daily basis (24).
Another study also affirms that idleness has a significant effect on the recovery of abdominal fat after it has been burnt.
The study maintained that people who engage in cardio exercises for a year after burning weight did not regain tummy fat. However, the sedative group who failed to perform exercise had their tummy fat increased by 25–38% (25).
Fact: Idleness encourages an increase in abdominal fat. Engaging in lots of cardio may resist belly fat regain after burning weight.
Little Protein Diets
To prevent weight gain, it is importantto have sufficient nutritional protein.
Aside from that high-proteinfoods increase your level of fullness and satisfaction, it as well encourages the rateof metabolism, which automatically leads to a gradual decrease in the consumption of calories (26, 27).
Unlike diets high in protein, low protein consumption increases tummy fat gradually.
According to differentinspectional research, those who take the highest proportion of protein are at the threat of excess tummy fat (28, 29, 30).
In the same vein, studies conducted on animal revealed that neuropeptide Y (NPY) hormone is responsible for greater crave for food, and in the end encourages tummy fat increment. Your levels of
Fact: Little protein consumption increases appetite and results in abdominal fat increment. This protein tends to increase your neuropeptide Y (hunger hormone).
Belly fat increment is a common feature during menopause.
During the puberty period, estrogen hormone automatically encourages the body to start secreting fat on the thighs and hips due to the perceived beginning of pregnancy.
This fat is not dangerous to the body; however, it may not be easy to burn them (34).
The case of menopause begins a year after woman’s last menstruation.
During this period, woman’s estrogen reduces and results in the secretion of fat in the tummy, instead of the thighs and hips (35, 36).
Many a number of woman gain tummy fat during this period. Findings say this may be genetic or result from the age that the menopause begins.
A study discovered that women that started menopause at a very early stage do not gain excess tummy fat (37).
Fact: Fat gain during menopause is a result of hormone changes, and occurs when fat secretion starts in the abdomen rather than in the thighs and hips.
Unhealthy Alimentary Canal Bacteria
Bacteria in hundreds reside in the gut, majorly the colon. A large volume of this bacteria are good for your health; however, we have among them those that pose more threats to health.
These bacteria are as well called microbiome or gut flora. To resist diseases and maintain an excellent immunity against diseases, gut health should not be taken with levity.
You run the risk of having cancer, heart disease, type two diabetes, and some other killer diseases if you do not take a goodmeasure of your gut bacteria (38).
Various researches suggested that maintaining the unhealthy equilibrium of bacteria in the gut has an effect on weight increase and the tummy fat.
Findings showed that a large amount of Firmicutes bacteria strikes people affected by obesitycompared with those with that are not affected.
Research also highlighted that this bacteria might heighten the proportion of consumed calories (39, 40).
An animal study maintained that mice that are not affected by bacteria have a high increase in fat when bacteria is given to them through fecal, which has a link with obesity when compared with the mice that are given bacteria that is associated with leanness (40).
Research on mothers with obese and lean twins affirmed that these people share collective “core” of flora within their relation which encourages fat gain, and the storage area of the weight (41).
Fact: Poor maintenance of gut health results in weight increase, especially abdominal fat.
Fruit juice contains more of sugar than people can believe.
Know that fruit juices that are said to be 100% unsweetened have more sugar.
In fact, 250 ml of cola and apple juice have around 24grams of sugar each. This also exists for grape juice; it contains 32grams of excess sugar (42, 43, 44).
It is knownthat fruit juice comes with minerals and vitamins. However, the fructose in it tends to trigger insulin impedance, and therefore increase tummy fat (45).
Fruit juice does not supply your body with easy to drink liquid calories; It also does not quench your crave for food like solid diet does (8, 9).
Fact: Fruit juice is a beverage that contains a high amount of sugar. It instigates insulin impedance and serves as an encouragement for tummy fat increment.
Cortisol and Stress
It is knownthat cortisol, as a hormone, is essentialfor existence.
Generated by adrenal glands, Cortisol due to its ability to send a quick response is otherwise known as the stress hormone.
As important as it is, Cortisol can result in weight increase if it is a surplus in the body, significantly in the tummy area.
Some individuals have the outcomes of stress to be consumption of excess food. However, cortisol does result in storage of fat in the tummy, instead of storing it in the whole body (46, 47).
Excitingly, according to research, women with a big waist and small hips were said to have a high amount of cortisol during stress (48).
Fact: Cortisol is generated due to stress. It results instomach fat especially in women with large waist compared to the hip.
To balance your weight and maintain excellent health, you need fiber.
If you are accustomed to taking some certain fibers, they can increase your fullness and reduce your craving for food which results in consumption of more reduced calories (49, 50).
In a study carried out among 1,114 men and women, it was highlighted that soluble fiber consumption result into decreased belly fat.
The study states that when there is an increment of 10-gram in the consumption of fiber that is soluble, there is a resultingreduction of 3.7% abdominal fat secreted (51).
However, the opposite is noticed for foods that have a largepercentage of low fiber and refined carbs. Crave for food, weight, and the abdominal fat is increased (52, 53, 54).
A complex study confirmed that whole grains that have a large amount of fiber were linked to a decrease in tummy fat, however, refined grains do the opposite (54).
Fact: A diet that is low in fiber and high in refined grains may lead to increased amounts of belly fat.
Obesity risk is being affected by genes most time (55).
In the same line, the possibility of secreting fat in the stomach area is to some extent affected by the gene (56, 57, 58).
Among these genes is that of the receptor, which controls the cortisol, and the genes involved in programming the leptin receiving nerve ending that does the energy unit consumption and that of weight (58).
Researchers in 2014, identified three new genes that are associated with an increased waist-to-hip ratio and android obesity (abdominal obesity), including two that were found only in women (59).
According to a 2014 finding, three distinct genes linked with heightened obesity in the stomach region and increased waist to hip proportion were recognised, with two of the genes that were peculiar to women (59).
Nonetheless, this area requires adequate research for better understanding.
Fact: Genes are known for influencing the increased waist-to-hip proportion and secretion of surplus calories as stomach fat.
Not Enough Sleep
You do not need to starve yourself of sleep; this has an effect on your health.
Different studies say reduced sleep has an effect on your health like overall weight and abdominal fat increment (60, 61, 62).
A study conducted among 68,000 women in a period of 16 years said people who slept for around five hours every night have 32% risk of gaining 15 kg weight compared to people who sleep for a minimum period of seven hours (63).
When you starve yourself of sleep, you run the risk of developing sleep ailments, which may result to increase in weight.
A common ailment that results from reduced night sleep is sleep apnea. It is a state of health when breathing halts frequently while sleeping at night. During this process, the airway is narrowedby soft tissues in the throat, which result in breath stoppage.
A finding from researchers showed that men who have obesity and sleep apnea were faced with excess belly fat compared to those stricken with obesity but do not have sleep ailment (64).
Fact: When you don’t have a good night rest, you run the risk of developing weight increase, and also tummy fat secretion.
It is a fact that many things are responsible for increased abdominal fat.
Of these factors are many you cannot prevent, especially those that are a result of your changes in hormones during menopause or your genes. However, we have among the factors, those you can prevent.