Why women have a hormonal belly and how to remove it
What is the cause of the “hormonal belly” and how to deal with it?
There are three hormones that are elevated as excess body fat around the waist: cortisol, insulin, and prolactin. Cortisol is a steroid hormone produced by cholesterol and secreted by the adrenal glands. It is often referred to as the stress hormone, as its main role is to help the body cope with a difficult situation by mobilizing the energy needed to power the muscles, brain, and heart. Normally, the action of this hormone is aimed at regulating carbohydrate metabolism. In small doses, it normalizes blood sugar levels and blood pressure, improves memory, strengthens the immune system and reduces susceptibility to pain.
“A small crease on a woman’s stomach is considered an absolute norm. On examination, it is usually revealed that fat deposits are evenly distributed in the abdomen and lower back. At the same time, not only subcutaneous, but also visceral fat is deposited. If the volume of both increases, the stomach acquires a rounded shape, becomes dense, it is no longer possible to draw it in. It is at this stage that women usually turn to a specialist for help.”
The expert spoke about the causes of the appearance of a hormonal belly, what symptoms still accompany it, and ways to get rid of the “lifeline”.
Out of the norm
To understand that the volume of the abdomen has gone beyond the norm, the caliper will help. This is a special device that visually resembles a caliper; it is used by a doctor to determine the percentage of fat in the waist area.
After the measurement, the doctor compares the results with the table, which shows the norms separately for women and men according to age. So, for girls under 30 years old, the optimal rates are in the range from 14 to 21 percent. At the age of 30 to 50 years of adipose tissue should be 15-23 percent, from 50 and older – 16-25 percent.
In addition, the volume of subcutaneous and visceral fat can be determined using bioimpedancemetry. Using a high-tech device, the doctor analyzes the composition of the human body, assessing the amount of adipose and muscle tissue, intra- and extracellular fluid, as well as other indicators.
Causes of a hormonal belly
If you have noted a sharp increase in the volume of the abdomen, then it is necessary to exclude endocrine pathology.
Firstly, it may be hypercortisolism, a rather serious disease caused by increased production of cortisol by the adrenal cortex. This pathology is also characterized by the formation of purple stretch marks (stretch marks) on the skin in the abdomen and thighs.
“Cortisol is called the stress hormone,” explains the doctor. – With its excessive production, the body begins to actively store fat. The most dangerous are not single, but permanent stressful situations, to which we sometimes stop paying attention.
Another hormone that affects fat storage is insulin. If it is produced too much, patients have cravings for starchy foods and sweets. To diagnose pathology, a study is carried out to detect elevated glucose levels and insulin resistance.
Prolactin is the third hormone that needs to be mentioned. With elevated rates, there is a slowdown in metabolism and, as a result, weight gain in the abdomen, chest and lower back.
In addition, an increase in body weight and deposition of fat in the abdomen is possible with thyroid pathology.
Other factors may also underlie the changes. For example, eating disorders, insufficient water intake, etc.
Symptoms of a hormonal stomach
In a woman with a hormonal belly, we often see a decrease in activity. Patients feel tired from the very morning. The mood is going down.
In addition, women complain of insomnia. Sometimes it happens that a person goes to bed at 11-12 pm, and wakes up at three in the morning and can no longer fall asleep.
Sweating, sudden mood swings appear, apathy is combined with nervousness and irritability.
How to get rid of a hormonal belly
While walking, you need to take four to five thousand steps without a break.
The attending physician will help correct the problem after a thorough examination, which includes various tests, including determining the level of certain vitamins and trace elements that contribute to the deposition of fat in the waist area.
However, much depends on the patients themselves. First, you need to normalize your sleep and wake schedule. You need to go to bed no later than 11 p.m., and you should get up at 6 or 7 a.m.
Have a full breakfast so that proteins, fats and slow carbohydrates enter the body, Eat three times a day. Eliminate constant tea drinking at work. If you need snacks, let them not be sweets, but fruits and sour-milk products.
Any cardio activity (for example, Nordic walking) is useful for the body, as it activates the metabolism and improves mood. So, while walking, you need to take four to five thousand steps at once (that is, without a break). Walk for at least 30 minutes at an average pace.