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the-truth-about-belly-fatHow to Reduce Belly Fat.

Basically it has to do with age, heredity, eating habits and hormones. But the hormonal reality is the culprit that is likely causing more fat around your middle if you are doing everything else right, such as exercising regularly and eating a diet low in saturated fats, shunning sugar, etc. After age 30 our bodies, whether men or women, see more belly fat due to an increase in estrogen levels. The estrogen tends to "take over" because our progesterone and testosterone are reduced. So what are ways to reduce belly fat and combat the seemingly inevitable signs of aging? We'll tell you!

Stop Belly Fat

What causes estrogen dominance?

Aging: The older we get, the more our hormones shift, causing fat to collect around our abdomens. When progesterone and testosterone are reduced, the predominant hormone circulating in the body is estrogen. Beginning at age 35 until age 50, two thirds of the progesterone your body normally produces is reduced, as opposed to only a 35% reduction of estrogen. By menopause, the levels of progesterone are extremely low, whereas the estrogen levels are about half they were before menopause. And higher estrogen is what inevitably causes that fat redistribution those of us are upset to have: larger stomachs, smaller butts or flat butts, softer muscle tone. This is why those jeans we fit in college and early marriage are too tight around the waist!

Chicken and Beef: This is the meat that has been fed hormones to help them to develop faster. Some experts say that is why our girls are menstruating at earlier ages. Choose hormone-free beef and chicken and beef that is grass-fed. The antibiotics, hormones and pesticides can mess with our hormones.

Fruits and Vegetables harvested with pesticides:  Pesticide residue has similar properties to estrogen. Go for organic when you can.

Xenoestrogens: These are perfumes, cleaning products, creams, lotions, soaps and even room deodorizers, to name just a few. When pregnant, the unborn child is sensitive to the effects of xenoestrogens that contaminate the mother. But the end result does not reveal itself until that child enters puberty.

Industrial Solvents: In female translation, this would be fingernail polish, fingernail polish remover, cleaning products, glues of all sorts, herbicides, carpet and indoor insect sprays. Go clean and green when using this stuff.

Too Much Sugar or Fast Food: The more sugar and fatty foods we consume, the higher the estrogen levels, bottom line.

Not Enough Magnesium and B6: Both these vitamins and minerals neutralize estrogen in the liver and many of us are deficient. Consider supplements and seek out good food sources.

Too Much Caffeine: Drinking four to five cups of coffee or other sources of caffeine ramp up a woman's estrogen levels.

Shrink Your Belly

There are ways to balance out your hormones. First of all, eat organic as much as you can. Find personal care and cleaning products that are "green" and "clean." And consider natural progesterone cream or bio-identical creams.

Natural progesterone cream is made from the plant, wild yam, and basically ups your body's progesterone levels, balancing out the hormones and eliminating estrogen dominance. The cream is rubbed into your soft tissue areas twice per day. Visit with a naturopath about the benefits of natural progesterone cream.

Bio-identical creams are mixed according to your hormone levels after taking saliva samples over different parts of the month. Some physicians and most naturopaths are available to provide this service to you. It will cost you, though. However, trying a bio-identical cream is worth the money if you are clearly estrogen dominant.  The goal of the cream is to bring your body back into balance.

We would add, too, that regular exercise and staying at a healthy weight will keep your estrogen levels from flying off the charts.

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