A thin waist is a synonym of slimness and youth, but what if the stomach does not want to “go”? What is the cause of the “hormonal belly” and how to deal with it?
Excess waist volume can seriously disrupt the proportions of a woman’s figure, and is often a direct consequence of health problems. In other words, until you deal with them, no amount of diet and exercise will help. We propose to understand the most common hormonal disorders that “endow” women with excess fat in this area.
To begin with, a small crease on the belly is the absolute norm for women, unless you are, of course, a fitness model before the competition. In this case, completely different laws come into play. By the way, there is no need to talk about health and hormonal balance here either.
Adipose tissue in the body is vital: it performs many important functions. In particular, it is involved in the synthesis of sex hormones. At the same time, obesity is the main factor in the development of polycystic ovary syndrome and, as a result, infertility, cardiovascular pathologies, diabetes mellitus, and a number of oncological diseases.
But back to the belly. There are three hormones whose increased levels manifest themselves in the form of excess body fat around the waist: cortisol, insulin, and prolactin. You may have even heard the term “cortisol belly”.
Cortisol is a stress hormone, under the influence of which the body begins to actively store fat cells. At the same time, insulin resistance is formed, which affects eating habits (cravings for sweets and fatty foods, ravenous appetite, “I’ve just eaten, but I’m hungry again”) and practically blocks the process of losing weight.
It is important to note that cortisol is produced by the adrenal glands, which respond to stress with powerful hormone release. At the same time, stress is not only about worrying about short-term events – on the contrary, but nature has also conceived that we use hormonal resources to safely experience a variety of life situations. For our adrenal glands, permanent stress is much more dangerous, and we often do not take it into consideration.
It can be caused by non-observance of the daily regimen with going to bed long after midnight, the constant presence of gadgets, lack of sleep and early waking up with liters of coffee, an improper diet with an excess of fast carbohydrates, a sedentary lifestyle. In general, everything has long become the norm for a modern person.
It is also easy to get into a vicious circle with insulin: overeating, lack of mobility, and unhealthy diet lead to weight gain and insulin resistance, that is, a state when insulin is not perceived by tissue cells.
As a result, a hormonal failure occurs in the body, an “insulin belly” appears (abdominal obesity is diagnosed in women > 80 cm and > 90 cm in men), and a high concentration of insulin in the blood blocks further lipolysis.
Another insidious hormone is prolactin, which slows down metabolism and increases appetite. As a consequence, in this case, we also have weight gain, often in the abdomen, chest and back.
To reduce it, you need to reduce prolactin, but at the same time, the concentration of prolactin often magically decreases if weight is normalized.
How to deal with a hormonal belly?
I can’t lose weight and get rid of my stomach – what to do? First of all, experts recommend taking tests for hormones, and not only for those mentioned above but also for thyroid hormones, the concentration of “bad” and “good” cholesterol, the level of some vitamins and microelements, vitamin D in particular.
After passing the tests according to the developed clinical minimum, you should not waste time on experiments, but you can immediately start working with the cause of excess weight. These are individual tips, but there are some general recommendations as well: go to bed no later than 23, get up at 6-7 in the morning, have a normal breakfast (proteins, fats, and slow carbohydrates, rather than coffee with a roll). Eat at least three times a day (or even 5 times, in smaller portions), excluding “junk” food, sweets, foods with dyes, sweeteners, preservatives.
It is recommended that you avoid snacking that can raise your blood sugar and keep it high. Reduce your calorie intake by 20% (no “600 calories per day”).
Consider taking adaptogens – ashwagandha, vitamin C, cordyceps, shiitake, lemongrass, Rhodiola Rosea, etc.
Also, do not forget about practicing sports. Daily walks of 4-5 thousand steps are also suitable. Monitor the stability of your mood, try to record the sources of stress and get rid of them, up to changing jobs and excluding toxic people in your environment.