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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    What is the best way to get rid of my gut/stomach fat?!

    I know there is no such thing as spot training where I can choose where to lose fat… but my stomach is really bothering me. I am fit, not overweight but always have excess fat around my waist and can't seem to lose it. Tips?
  • Find a professional to answer your question

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    Eric Rosario

    Exercise Physiologist

    Master of Applied Science by Research into the Effects of Strength Training on Postmenopausal women. I have been involved in strength training for 67 years … View Profile

    When considering the best way to reduce a fat gut one must first establish what it is that you are trying to get rid of.
    There are two type of fat that collect around the waist:

    • Subcutaneous  — Under the skin
    • Omental or Visceral or Intra abdominal — around the Omentum and internal organs.
    According to conventional wisdom subcutaneous fat cannot be spot reduced but should be tackled by diet and general exercise. This type of fat may not present a pretty sight but it is not as harmful to the health as Omental fat.
    Excessive Omental fat, called the beer gut in common parlance, is very different, it seems to be associated with several chronic diseases like Diabetes, Hypertension, Depression and even some forms of cancer (Maglione-Garves et al)
    Stress can activate the hypothalamus and cortisol is released from the adrenal cortex. (Maglione-Garves et al).  This can activate the cortisol receptors in the omentum and lead to increased omental fat (Wettstein).
    If stress can initiate Omental fat, relaxation and meditation can reduce it. There are also some Yogic practices like Uddiyana Bandah that are helpful in this connection.
    To get details of this practice put Yoga Journal Upward Abdominal Lock into your browser and you will get a rather detailed account of the performance. Also look up Savasana for the relaxation practice.

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    Arlene is a registered practising dietitian, with a private practice in the Eastern Suburbs of Sydney, and has built a strong business over the last … View Profile

    Stomach fat is visceral fat which is around your internal organs. This is the most unhealthy fat. Where your fat is stored is genetically determined. Postmenopausally you also tend to store fat around the stomach. Fortunately one tends to lose this fat first when you do reduce your weight. You need to become more vigilant with your eating program. Watch the portions you are consuming, sit down and eat everything on a pate and this will prevent you from snacking, drink water instead of soft drinks, ruced alcohol consumption and become more physically active. You should try and do at least 1 hour of exercise each day - both cardio and strength training. As you lose weight you should find rhe fat on your stomach reduce and you will feel more comfortable. If you look on my website there are examples of meal plans which you can follow www.arlenesway.com.au.

  • Dr Richard Wong

    Personal Trainer

    Qualified with a B: Human Movement Science and Certificate. I grew up with sport. I competed succesfully at a state and national level as a … View Profile

    If we had just a bit more information like what exercise, how much and how hard. Also how do you eat, types and timing would help heaps. Losing fat from your tummy region is like losing it anywhere else. Any good program should included the right nutrition plan with the right macronutrients, weight training and cardio exercise. Maybe you have concerns in any of the areas. Make sure 75% of your total cardio is low to moderate, ensure you are eating low GI carbs, protein thoughout the day, majority coming from meat, eat plenty of green veg. Just be consistent with it. It will happen with the right combo.

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    Peta Adams

    Dietitian

    I am an Accredited Practising Dietitian locally born and working within the Riverina.I have a passion for helping people to achieve their nutrition goals, coaching … View Profile

    Excellent answers so far regarding exercise and belly weight.

    Another important factor to consider if insulin resistance tends to cause an increase in abdominal weight. So looking more cloesly at the types and portions of carbohydrate foods you consume can be central to improving abdominal weight.

    For example high glycaemic index carbohydrates increase you blood glucose levels rapidly and can affect ability to lose weight. Swapping to low glycaemic index carbohdyrates such as; whole fruit, legumes, barley, quiona, soy and linseed bread, vita weats, high fibre cereals (Barley max, All bran) all have low GI values so can improve/reduce blood glucose spikes.

    Portion sizes of carbohdyrate foods are also important, even if you consume a low GI carbohydrate, try to be mindful of the actual size per serve; ie

    fruit (tennis ball size)
    cereals (1 cup), muesli (1/2cup)
    Grains/pasta 1/2-1cup
    bread (1 slice), wraps 1/2 -1
    Yogurt 100-150g

    Aswell as improving your abdmoinal weight, low GI carbohydrates are often higher in fibre and assist with keeping you full for longer. 

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