Updated: May 27, 2020
With the new year (and new DECADE!!) just around the corner, you may be looking to achieve a weight loss and wellness goal ~ perhaps specifically in regards to belly fat. Weight that is stored around the belly has typically been associated with a higher risk of various diseases, such as diabetes and heart disease.
By tapping into fat burning mechanisms, not only can we decrease belly fat, we can also work on decreasing risk of chronic disease! 🎉
Two of the main factors that determine weight gain around the belly revolve around the hormones insulin and cortisol. The 20 strategies that I'm sharing today in this video all trace back to addressing these two essential hormones.
Insulin is your storing hormone and it's released in high amounts in response to carbohydrates* (sugars and refined carbohydrates have the biggest response). When insulin is present, it locks up your fat cells so that fat stored in your body, as well as your belly, can NOT be used as an energy source. While insulin is high, your body is in storing mode, not burning mode.
Cortisol is your stress hormone. You naturally have higher levels of cortisol in the morning when you first wake up - this is entirely normal and something that we WANT. However, problems can arise when we have higher levels throughout the day. Cortisol's main job is to increase the availability of blood glucose so that you have energy to respond to a possibly life threatening situation. This can lead to higher levels of blood glucose, followed by higher levels of insulin. Remember, insulin is the storing hormone that we don't want to remain elevated if weight loss is the goal. Cortisol has also been found to uniquely cause weight gain around the belly. So keeping cortisol in normal range is also essential to reducing weight gain and tapping into fat burning mechanisms around the belly.
*Interestingly, some people may release higher levels of insulin than others in response to the same amount of carbohydrates. This is one of the factors that can determine how quickly or slowly your body will burn fat as fuel.
Check out the 20 ways that you can lose belly fat (without counting calories) with the video below!
Pssst - I'll be announcing the New Year Intermittent Fasting Challenge VERY. SOON. Make sure you stay in the loop with the weekly AEN newsletter HERE.
Autumn Elle Nutrition