Abdominal Fat after 50 – What can you do?
If you have been struggling with abdominal fat after 50 you are not alone. I have the same problem along
with many others.
Abdominal fat occurs when you eat too many calories and are inactive and also when your hormones are out of balance. For a women, once you reach the age of around 50 or sometimes earlier (depending on when menopause occurs, weight is shifted from hips and buttocks to the abdominal area.
It seems that low estrogen levels can influence how fat is distributed. You may become more “apple” shaped. This can be very unhealthy and is tied to several health problems.
The first thing to know about abdominal fat after 50 is that you can conquer it. If you want to decrease your abdominal fat to more healthy levels and get rid of dangerous “visceral” fat.
As we age, we lose muscle. It is very important to build muscle as you age. It not only burns fat but it keep you strong.
You must stop muscle loss as you age. Stop the muscle loss and start building muscle. Building muscle gives you the benefit of becoming stronger as you age instead of the other way around.
Increasing activity helps some but I have found that to really get rid of abdominal fat you really must increase your fat burning capacity. That means building muscle. Muscle burns fat.
I discovered that after working doing cardio exercises for 30 minutes to an hour three times a week I really wasn’t losing my abdominal fat. I added a step class twice a week. That helped some but the only weight bearing exercise I was doing was light 3lb weights at the end of the cardio class.
It was when I added the weight class that I really started seeing results. I am so much stronger today because of it and I have the abdominal fat under control.
This is done along with daily ab workouts. You can work your abdominal muscles everyday. Do at least a 2 minute ab workout each and every day. Work up to 5 minutes. You could do this on an exercise ball too.
You never want to just “lose weight” because you will lose muscle weight if your are not doing strength training as you lose.
By building muscle you are not only becoming stronger and healthier, but you are also looking great!
The best size weight to use
I’m not talking about lifting really heavy weights and getting bulky muscles like a man. I am talking about adding a weight lifting class with challenging weights for your individual body.
The way to tell if you have the right weight for you is if you have to stop and take breaks too often during the session. The right amount of weight to lift is the one where you can lift through the whole session and you get slightly winded.
Once you feel that you are doing the whole session easily, it is time to increase the weight you are using.
Lifting weights not only will help you burn that stubborn abdominal fat or “belly fat” but will help your bones stay strong and even reverse osteopenia and osteoporosis.
How I started building muscle
I started with 5lb weights for biceps, triceps and shoulders and back and chest. For squats and lunges I don’t use any weight except my body weight. I have a rod in my spine so this is the best for me. However, most everyone else can add weight to the bar for these. Your legs have the larger muscle groups and are stronger than your other muscle groups.
Today it is more important than ever to build muscle as we get older. How many times have you heard of a person falling in their homes or unable to do the things they used to do because of age? It does not have to be that way.
Start now to maintain your muscle mass and even build muscle. We begin to lose muscle after the age of 30 about 3 to 5 percent each year after we reach 30! If you are over 50 now and have been sedentary, now is the time to begin to slow down that muscle loss. You will get stronger and stronger and as an added bonus that abdominal fat will begin to decrease.
You will look great, feel great, be stronger, healthier and as an added boost more energy.
UPDATE: It is now 1 year since I started lifting weights. I am lean, strong and have normal abdominal fat. I use twice the amount of weight than I started with.
Balance your Hormones
As estrogen decreases, insulin resistance increases. Increased insulin resistance means decreased fat burning. It takes more insulin to do the same job and visceral fat increases. This fat releases inflammatory cytokines. The mitrochondria (cell engine) becomes stressed out. This inflammation of the fat cells causes insulin resistance.
So how do you begin to balance this? There are some things you can do. First, check with your doctor to see if you would benefit for hormone replacement therapy. Other things you can do:
- Decrease calorie consumption
- lower sugar consumption
- Eat protein pre and post workouts
- Eat spices – Nutmeg, cloves, curcumin, etc.
- Drink green and black tea
- drink coffee
- Boost Beta Glucan (Oats, Barley, Shiitake Mushrooms)
- Get plenty sleep
- Drink plenty water
- Increase your muscle mass
- Eat Mufas (avocados, nuts, seeds, oils, olives, and dark chocolate)
- Cardio exercise 3 – 5 times per week for at least 30 minutes
- Weight building exercise
- limit alcohol consumption
I will be adding more content about how I conquered my abdominal fat after 50 so I hope you check back often.
if you have an experience you could share or just a question please leave me a comment below.