By Robbie Goldman
DHAC Exercise Physiologist
How do I lose my belly fat? This may be the single most asked question by people first starting exercise programs.
After all, there is an awful lot of confusing options being advertized to us all day long. Commercials, programs, products, diets, friends, family, and even our email inbox are all trying to give you different advice. Unfortunately most of it all turns out to be false. Just empty promises by folks trying to get your hard earned money!
To start moving in the right direction lets consider calories. Calories are just stored energy. Calories are stored as food that can be eaten and used by your body for daily activities. Calories are also are also stored in your body to be used for later activity.
Not all calories are created equal. Calories that come from fat have more stored energy than calories coming from carbohydrate or protein.
Eating more calories than your body needs daily means that your body will store the excess calories. Typically excess calories are stored in the form of fat cells. And unfortunately, after years and years of evolution, our bodies store most of its fat around our belly and hips to help insulate and protect our organs.
Now… Back to our original question. A negative caloric balance will cause your body to use some of its stored calories for energy. Basically, you need to use more calories than you eat on a daily basis in order to lose weight.
Unfortunately, while you can reduce calories, you CANNOT target specific areas for weight loss. You will lose fat but your body still wants to maintain or hold onto fat around your midsection. With enough time and effort though, you will start to lose that belly fat. The amount of effort you put in will determine the amount of results you get back. The area that stores the most is the last to see a difference.
The last step in helping you lose that belly fat getting the right guidance so you know how to direct your time and effort. Start by speaking with a registered dietician about specific/scientific ways for you to eat fewer calories. Lastly, it’s time to speak with an exercise physiologist about safe/scientific ways for you to use more stored calories on a daily basis. With the help of these to people you CAN and WILL reach your goal of losing that Belly Fat!