Other than vanity [we all want a washboard tummy] the reason we need to lose that extra weight we call a spare tire is that it is a danger to our health. Having extra weight around our midsection [more dangerous than fat around your hips and thighs] can cause all kinds of health problems. It is also noted that visceral fat [deep seated fat in the peritoneal cavity] is far more dangerous than subcutaneous fat [under the skin] in that it can boost inflammation, increase the chance of developing diabetes, create cardiovascular problems and cause hardening of the arteries.
Check out your middle
The average waist size for a man should be 40 inches or less, while for a woman it is 35 inches or less. Get yourself a soft tape measure and without holding in your breath or stomach, take your measurement just above the hip bones [on bare skin]. This is a simple and reliable way to measure your hidden fat and weight status.
Ok - now we know just how big our middle is and that it can affect our health in a bad way if we don't do anything about it. One of the best ideas here is to find a diet that assists with losing belly fat and a few tips here would help you in finding the right type of diet. Find one that is high in whole grains, rich in fruits, vegetables, beans, nuts, fish, lean meat, eggs, poultry and low-fat dairy, ensure that it is calorie controlled and watch your waist fade away.
Don't forget that while on this well balanced, calorie controlled diet you still need to exercise [around 60 minutes a day of moderate activity] and drink extra fluids, preferably water as this helps remove the extra toxins that will build up during the diet and exercise period.
Would just doing exercise work?
Yes and No - just exercising [the harder you exercise, the more belly fat you may lose] will help if you do high-intensity aerobic exercises or hundreds of belly crunches a day, this will tighten the muscles and make your belly look better but in the long run the excess fat on your abdomen will take a lot longer to fade away.
Combining diet and exercise will increase the amount of fat you will lose around your belly, most diets recommend around 1 600 calories per day and there is a diet book out there that suggests we change to a diet rich in monounsaturated fats [monounsaturated fatty acids known as MUFAS] not only would this help with the weight loss but it also has a good effect on our health. While these are the so called healthy fats, remember they are still fats and it is easy to over-eat when eating nuts or avocado etc and this can undo [by adding to your weight problem] the health benefits provided by these fats.
Candice is a full time author and entrepreneur. Visit her at Little Tikes Toys for a whole range of toys available for infants and toddlers and children.