Struggling to lose that stubborn belly fat?

You have done sit ups till your abs feel like they have been run over by a bus. You have sweated yourself silly on the treadmill.  You have diligently cut down on calories. And where has that left you? Let me guess – probably sore, exhausted and hungry. Yet for all your concerted efforts you are still sporting a flabby “moon-bag” pouch of fat on your tummy area and those muffin tops have gained a life all of their own. Don’t you want to just scream with frustration?  An article that I read this week, written by Dr. Mercola, shed some light on this problem that many people experience and get frustrated by. This post looks at some of the things you might be doing wrong and what you could try to alleviate yourself of the burden of belly fat.

Is belly fat really that dangerous?

muffin topsYes, it absolutely is the most dangerous kind and is really worth the effort and discipline it takes to rid yourself of it. It’s NOT about getting a 6-pack. It IS about avoiding diabetes, heart disease, stroke and other chronic illnesses. Abdominal fat actually produces inflammation in your body, which can trigger a wide range of diseases linked with metabolic syndrome. Part of the problem why many people fail to achieve a flat stomach is that they lack a key ingredient in this journey to good health. That key ingredient is PERSEVERANCE.

What is “perseverance”?

Perseverance is about getting back up when you have failed, dusting yourself off and saying, “Ok, that didn’t work – what can I try next? In a nutshell, perseverance is about not giving up – EVER. This truth is so easy to forget, because it is convenient to forget. It is much easier to give up than to persevere – but there is no reward for giving up.  Until we take full control over our actions , we will forever be looking to the latest fad diet or miracle pill to make our lives better. Perseverance is a conscious choice to take responsibility and keep trying till you succeed.

Why you might be struggling?

Age: From around the age of 30, your human growth hormone (HGH) level begins to drop off, which negatively impacts both fat metabolism and muscle-building, making it increasingly difficult to lose weight. Fortunately, you don’t have to throw the towel in just because you are more mature in age. It just means that exercise and diet become that much more important to get right.

globalwarmingExercise: If your preferred exercise routine involves lots of cardio, then don’t be surprised if you struggle to lose weight. Cardio is among the least effective forms of exercise when it comes to weight loss. Instead, exercise in shorter bursts at your maximum intensity with rest periods in between. This burns more fat than exercising continuously for an entire session. The good news is that you only need 20 minutes 3 times a week. It is also important to incorporate some strength training into your routine. No ladies, you won’t get bulging masculine biceps. But if your underarms dance a jig whenever you reach for something, then take lifting some weight during your workout routine under serious consideration

Food: You can exercise till the cows come home, but you will continue to struggle with your weight until you dramatically change what goes into your mouth on a daily basis. This means not just being good Monday to Friday and then blowing all your good efforts with 2 days of “I have been so good all week, I deserve xyz……..”. Be honest. Are you still eating a diet that includes too much sugar and grains and the wrong kinds of fat? Eating the right type of foods is crucial in getting rid of belly fat. Focus on vegetables and replace the processed carbs and grains with healthy fats. Sources of healthful fats include avocados, nuts, olive oil, coconut oil, butter, eggs and pastured meat.

Stress:  Yes, we are all stressed. Just living has become stressful in this day and age. It’s difficult to avoid, so instead we need to learn to manage it better. Stress makes your body produce cortisol, known as “the stress hormone,” which depletes lean muscle and makes your body hold on to fat in the abdominal region. It also enlarges your fat cells, allowing them to store more fat. So find ways to de-stress.  Get more sleep, go for a massage, take time out for yourself to do whatever you really enjoy, practice some deep breathing or try Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT).

I believe about 80 percent of your ability to reduce excess body fat is determined by what you eat, with the other 20 percent related to exercise and other healthy lifestyle habits such as sleep and stress reduction. – Dr. Mercola

To conclude:

Dr. Mercola’s article has definitely given me some things to think about. I hope it can help you too.  Remember, the road to success is often long and challenging, but your chance of reward is so much greater if you choose to persevere and not give up. Good luck.


Read Dr. Mercola’s full article titled, Are These the Reasons Why You’re Not Losing Belly Fat?

About Nicky Perks

Passionately sharing information about the paleo/primal, high fat/low carb lifestyle that will rock your world! I am on my own journey to good health and a slim body. My goal? To enjoy the ride as life on this beautiful planet is just too short to do it any other way.

Posted on May 18, 2014, in Primal 101 and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. I seem to form the impression that you are suggesting that with belly fat the answer is not with exercise OR do not believe if you exercise that your belly fat will disappear. It has always been my view that one needs exercise as well as control over what one eats. In saying all that – exercise reduces that weight you are talking about for many millions around the world. One hardly ever sees a serious swimming carrying much weight, or a cyclist, runners, gymnast, footballers etc etc. Note, I do dot refer to those who are not series at the sport. If one is series about losing that weight then you have to be series about getting rid of that weight.

  2. Yes, but the reality is that very few serious athletes have a weight problem to begin with, so you probably won’t find bellies on them. For the rest of us who aren’t professional athletes it is 80% what we put into our mouths and 20% exercise. Exercise is important but what is more important is the RIGHT kind of exercise and the RIGHT kind of foods. That is what my take home from this article is.

  3. Nope – You are assuming athletes have no weight problems and secondly serious athletes are not necessary professional athlete I would suggest most are not – there are millions who are not. Most of the athletes I am referring to, pick up additional weight once they stop there exercise programs. The other group of people who do not lose weight are usually one of the following – ask any gym and the fall out rate is about 40% (not serious) then there are people who run for a few months and say “well that did not work” and the same with walking, swimming etc. (not serious) I agree with you, what you eat and how you exercise is important.

    I love you blog – I have learnt much and it is written in a way that it is fun to read.

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