Pot belly or obesity, common most among men, is a situation in which excess fat accumulates in the stomach or abdominal region. Also called beer belly or Abdominal obesity is essentially caused by poor feeding habits and it happens gradually, even without the person noticing. Obesity has been known to pose serious health risks to an individual, some of which are
- Diabetes: a situation in which there’s excessive sugar in the blood. When you eat, your digestive system breaks down carbohydrate into glucose, your body produces an hormone called insulin which then transports the glucose into target organs such as the muscle cells (I explained this in my last post). When there is too much food, blood glucose levels rises and your body becomes insulin resistant, a disease called type 2 diabetes.
- Asthma: obese people are more likely to develop asthma. They breathe quickly and very often while inhaling small volumes of air. As a result of low lung volume, the muscles are tighter and the airway is narrower.
- Alzheimer’s diseases: obese or overweight people are strongly linked to developing cardiovascular and metabolic diseases which could potentially be linked to Alzheimer’s disease.
- High blood pressure: this is the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps blood. When you are obese, or overweight, your body builds up plaque, a waxy substance that’s built inside the coronary arteries. High bp can lead to coronary disease, heart disease, heart failure, kidney disease even diabetes.
CAUSES OF OBESITY
The most prevalent cause of obesity is net energy imbalance-the organism consumes more usable calories than it expends, wastes or discards through elimination. Our lifestyle is also a causative factor, that’s why we need to be careful how we live. Below are common causes of obesity
- To much alcohol intake- drinking excessive alcohol such as alcoholic beverages, ‘ogogoro’ or beer is definitely a cause of obesity. Drinking beer causes beer belly, or beer gut, hence the name. Alcohol consumption is directly associated with waist circumference and with a higher risk of abdominal obesity in men.
- Poor exercise routine: sleeping a lot causes fat accumulation, we all know that, but what we don’t know is that the fat accumulation extends to the belly thereby causing pot-belly. When a person undergoes low or no physical activities excess fat begins to accumulate because such person is not burning fat by any means, therefore, exercising is a very good way to burn belly fat and stay in good shape.
- Poor feeding habit/diet: poor diet doesn’t exactly mean that a person is eating less food it also means when you are eating too much food or when you are consuming only one type of nutrient in a particular food. For example, there are good carbohydrates and bad ones. Fruits, veggies, legumes etc are the good ones while biscuits, cakes, chocolates, donuts are bad carbs, refined and the only thing they do is increase your insulin level and slows down metabolism. This excess sugar is unusable by the body and is therefore stored as belly fat. Overeating causes weight gain especially if the food is high in fat.
- Stress: your body is not a machine, it needs rest, even machines need rests. Stress does more harm than good to your body, for example, when stressed, the body produces excess cortisol, an hormone that stores fat in the abdominal region, thereby creating belly fat.
- Hereditary: well, we all have that one thing that was inherited from our parents. If one of your parent is/are obese, then you are likely to be obese. Its just genetics.
- Live a sedentary lifestyle i.e exercise daily, walk as much as you can, run as much as you can, hit the gym, work out. It takes determination.
- Minimize fatty foods intake, such as beef, cheese, ice cream, etc. Some of these foods contain other nutrients such as protein but they have reasonable amount of fats too.
- Follow the water diet recipe, add freahly grated ginger, meduim sized cucumber, thinly slized lemon into 2 litres of water or the water therapy, first thing in the morning and last thing at night. Drink about 10 glasses of water daily.
- Eat frequently but moderately, take food containing proteins, vitamins, and even minerals and avoid carbohydrates consumption at night when the body is at rest.
- Reduce your consumption of alcohols, take non alcoholic beverages like tea, milk or even water.
- Add plenty of veggies, fruits, whole grains, seeds and nuts, and other protein containing foods
- Most importantly have dinner 2-4 hours before bed to avoid fats, carbs accumulation.