Diet containing carbohydrates and too many fats : a factor in middle
age abdominal fat
This dangerous equation can lead to
and is even suspected to be the cause of some
You can have the same body
fitness, no matter what your age, genetics, gender, or body style. You have
the same ability to build
muscle as you did in your youth. The exercises that kept you
lean and tone at
20 will keep you lean and tone at 50. As you age, you should have even greater
eat right and
As most of would would be knowing, there are two main types of fat in the
waist area. Visceral
fat, stored beneath your
is deposited between the internal organs. This is the type of
gives the stomach a "beer belly" or "pot belly" appearance, in which the abdomen
protrudes but at the same time feels hard when you touch it.
Subcutaneous fat, on the other hand, is stored just under the
skin. It is what
gives a belly a flabby, wobbly appearance. Both types of
belly fat can be harmful to
the health, but visceral fat even more so.
The next question that follows is what all to do to maintain that body,
answer is simple; a combination of exercise-
combined with a low fat diet.
Choose Low-GI Carbs
Carbs that have a high
Glycemic Index (GI) (Scale that measures a carbs effect on blood glucose levels.
The scale ranges from 1 to 160. 70 to 160 is high, 56 to 69 is medium, and 55
and below is low.) rating are quickly broken down by the body and cause a rapid,
large rise in blood glucose levels, which in turn triggers the pancreas to
release large amounts of insulin. Insulin is necessary for the body to be able
to use glucose for energy, but high amounts of insulin promote fat storage in
the body. In contrast, low-GI carbs, which take much longer to digest, cause
only a small, slow rise in the blood glucose and insulin levels. In addition,
low-GI foods reduce cravings—which could lead to weight gain—as they provide the
body with a slow, steady supply of energy. Most non-starchy
vegetables, legumes and fruit
have a low GI rating while most refined carbohydrate-rich foods and potatoes are
rated high on the Glycemic Index.
A carb that measures really high on the GI scale will go
into the blood stream very fast and cause your blood sugar levels to sky
rocket. A carb that measures low on the GI will be fed into the blood stream
a little at a time while it’s being digested.
Any carbohydrate source will increase belly fat
if the amount of carb calories it delivers are great enough to increase insulin.
However, simply having too many calories increases belly fat, too. To a
very small extent whole grains do have an advantage - they contain
fiber and tiny amounts of
some essential nutrients. But for someone who has problems with belly fat
(central adiposity), whole grains are basically almost as bad as
white flour. The extra
calories have to be stored somewhere and the first place your body places them
is outside the portal vein of the
liver, around your stomach and the organs in the visceral cavity.
You can click here,
to check out the GI value of certain foods.
How to Switch to a Low GI Diet
The basic technique for eating the low GI way is simply by
swapping high GI carbs for low GI carbs. For example,
breakfast cereals based on oats, barley and bran
Use breads with wholegrains, stone-ground flour, sour dough
Reduce the amount of potatoes you eat
Enjoy all other types of fruit and vegetables
Use Basmati or Doongara rice
Enjoy pasta, noodles, quinoa
Eat plenty of salad vegetables with a vinaigrette dressing
Another study indicates that, the liver is
a key tissue in mediating weight gain induced by excess carbohydrates. According
to a team led by biochemistry and nutritional sciences professor James Ntambi
reported that a gene in the liver, called SCD-1, is what causes mice to gain
weight on a diet laden with carbohydrates.
Watch Out for Fats but Don't Eliminate the Good Fats Completely
Fat contains more than twice as many calories as protein or carbohydrates.
A gram of fat provides 9 calories (39kJ)
whereas a gram of carbohydrates or protein contains 4 calories (16.8kJ). Fat also has a low thermogenic effect, that is,
the body uses very little energy for the
breakdown of fat (only 0-3 percent of its calorific value). In
contrast, protein has a high thermogenic effect (20-30 percent), which means
that the body burns a significant share of the calories provided by a
protein-rich meal in the process of breaking down and digesting the meal.
At the same time, it is important not to completely eliminate all fats from
diet. Essential fatty acids (EFAs)—found in large quantities in such foods as
nuts, seeds, fatty fish and unrefined whole grains—are absolutely necessary for
the proper functioning of the body. These fats cannot be synthesized by the body
and must therefore be obtained through diet.
In contrast, saturated fats
— found in foods from animal sources like meat and dairy, should be avoided.
These fats have been shown to promote fat accumulation and weight gain. The body
does need saturated fats in very small amounts for some particular purposes, but
the body is able to synthesize its own saturated fatty acids when needed.
formed in a chemical process that food manufacturers use to turn liquid oils
into solid fats need to be avoided as they can lead to a higher overall
body weight, even when the
total caloric intake is controlled. They are most often found in fried
foods, vegetable shortenings, hard margarine, cookies, crackers, chips, and
These two factors play a predominant role in your abdominal weight gain.
Other factors which can play a major role are,
Alcohol consumption- most of the indigested alcohol is converted into
acetate by the liver, which is then released into the bloodstream. Studies
have shown that acetate is used by the body in preference over other fuels,
particularly fat, thus putting the breaks on
Take action now before things go out of control. Enroll on a
diet and exercise program,
* Exercise moderately for 30 minutes a day. Find an activity you enjoy, such
as swimming, walking or dancing. By making changes to your lifestyle, you can
include exercise in your daily routine without having to go to the gym or run a