How To Balance These Hormones To Burn Belly Fat
Cannot seem to burn belly fat?
Do you seem to hit a weight loss plateau?
Can’t seem to move the weight scale even though you seem to be doing everything right, like eating correctly and exercising enough?
Well, there can be many reasons for the same; some of the lesser-known but important ones are listed in the below article.
Related Article: 5 Surprising Reasons You Are Not Able To Reduce Belly Fat
In this post, I want to discuss hormones. Your body’s endocrine system, or your hormonal system, is a very delicate system.
Due to various reasons like exposure to environmental toxins, stress, lack of sleep, excess sugar, alcohol, and caffeine may be thrown out of balance, which may be a strong reason behind your body’s stubbornness in shedding weight, particularly around the belly area.
Let’s discuss Three Of The Most Powerful Hormones that may cause many health issues, especially fat gain, when not rectified.
Estrogen is a female sex hormone, but men also have it in limited quantities. In the right quantities, estrogen plays important functions in both men and women. But when you become estrogen dominant, i.e., the level of estrogen increases in your body, this can be very bad and lead to a host of health issues.
In most cases, the way we accumulate excess estrogen is through our diet and the environment. For example, when we eat foods like soy or animals, which are fed hormones, and antibiotics, or eat vegetables and fruits, which are treated with pesticides, and other harmful toxic compounds, we accumulate estrogen in our bodies.
How can you tell if you are estrogen dominant?
If you are a woman and have PMS, fatigue, headaches, and too much weight around your hips and abdomen area and have a really hard time losing weight, then you are estrogen dominant.
For men, if you have low libido, little motivation, increased weight around your abdomen area, and can’t seem to gain or even retain lean muscle mass, then you are estrogen dominant. One other common condition in men is gynecomastia. Men with too much estrogen in their system may start developing male breasts.
Here Are Some Of The Ways That Will Allow You To Lower Estrogen Levels In Your System
-Minimize your toxic overload, including xenoestrogens like BPA found in plastic products.
-Besides this, try and eat as much organic produce, and avoid any commercially raised meats and dairy which are full of antibiotics, pesticides and other artificial hormones.
-Increase your omega-3 content by eating fish, free from mercury.
-If you don’t eat fish, I highly recommend you supplement with fish oil, or better yet, krill oil. You also need to reduce your intake of omega-6, which is found in vegetable oils like sunflower, saffola etc and replace these oils with healthier versions like ghee and/or coconut oil.
-Reduce or completely reduce your alcohol intake as alcohol increases estrogen levels.
Insulin is a hormone released by the beta cells of your pancreas. It helps sugar move from your blood to your cells, which can be used for energy or stored as glycogen in the liver and muscles.
If you eat too many carbs (especially in the form of simple sugars like cakes and pastries) too often, more insulin is released to combat that extra sugar. Over time, your cells become insensitive to excess insulin, ultimately leading to insulin sensitivity.
The higher your insulin levels, the worse your insulin resistance. Elevated fasting insulin is the single greatest marker for assessing a person’s risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes.
A blood test can determine your fasting insulin levels. A normal range should be less than 5, ideally less than 3. If your insulin is above 5, aim to reduce your sugar intake to bring it down.
Here Are Some Ways To Get Your Fasting Insulin To Less Than 5
-You need to go low-carb. Less than 100g a day, ideally somewhere between 20-50 grams a day. You can do this for a few weeks or longer if you feel you can sustain this kind of diet. However, once you get the boost by lowering your carbs and have started to feel significantly better, you can stabilize your carb intake between 100g to 200g based on your total caloric intake.
-Exercise more, as studies have shown, can dramatically improve insulin sensitivity.
-Going low-carb is not the only solution. First, you need to completely eliminate processed or refined carbs like white rice, white bread, and all forms of sugar. Then, ideally, you should avoid fruits for a short while until your fasting insulin levels are normalized. Then, you can re-introduce them eventually.
-Increase caloric intake from healthy fats like avocados, coconut oil, ghee, nuts, egg yolk, whole cow’s raw milk etc., to compensate for the reduced carb intake.
Cortisol is called the ‘Stress Hormone,’ produced by your adrenal gland.
More stress > More Cortisol > Increased Appetite > More food > Weight gain.
Please note some people respond to stress differently. They stop eating and reduce weight, which is not healthy because they don’t just lose fat but also lose lean mass. Imagine a time when you were super stressed about something and ate a whole tub of ice cream.
Most overweight [or obese] people develop a not-so-good relationship with food. A term called emotional eating comes to my mind when I think about this. But, of course, emotional eating is only linked with junk food. I mean, you don’t go crazy eating a crazy amount of broccoli when you are stressed, right?
Here are a few solutions you can implement that will reduce your stress and allow you to build a good relationship with food.
-Commit to Mindful Eating once every week, yes, just once
-Next time when you sit for your meals, try not to watch TV and eat in silence whenever you can.
-First, enjoy the smell and sight of food. Then, take the first bite and put the fork down. Close your eyes, and really cherish the flavors and the taste. Chew properly and realize how we have then the tendency to swallow quickly and eat the next bite!
Let me know how that goes!
You don’t have to sit in a lotus pose for 20 minutes; instead, mindfulnesses can be done for a few minutes spread throughout the day. Just pause and make an effort!
Mindfulness can be practiced during mundane tasks—when you are doing your dishes, stopping at a traffic light, or even waiting in line to withdraw cash from an ATM, pause from your ‘automated thinking‘ and be.
Over time, through meditation and mindfulness, you will start to build a better relationship with your food plus lower your stress overall.
Have any doubts or questions? Let me know in the comments below!
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About Akash Sehrawat
Akash is a creator of 25+ programs and certificate courses in which more than 200,000 students have enrolled both on Udemy and Fabulous Body's native platform. Akash is also an author of three books that can be found on Amazon. His answers on Quora have gathered more than 12 million views in less than a year.