Goodbye Belly Fat
Not many of us can say we are truly satisfied with the shape of our stomachs. Today, many of us are stuck in the "work-TV-bed" routine. As a result, we eat too many fast-food meals and drink one too many beers and it's very easy for us to put on a few extra pounds. Even women who are very careful with their diet and exercise regularly may nevertheless be unhappy with their appearance after pregnancy. The solution is, of course, to find a way to get rid of that stomach fat once and for all. But how? We're bombarded by internet and TV adverts promising us that a certain product or weight loss pill will give us the body of our dreams, but often, these promises are too good to be true. Radical plastic surgery procedures to trim down the stomach area are becoming increasingly popular, so does that mean that good old-fashioned dieting and exercise are no longer relevant? Let's take a look at those methods of losing stomach fat which, according to the medical experts, do work.
There is no escaping good diet and regular exercise if you really want to deal with your tummy fat. Even if you opt for cosmetic surgery to get rid of the fat, you won't be able to keep the fat off unless you improve your lifestyle. A quick internet search will soon reveal a whole host of fad and trendy diets which promise to remove tummy fat in a short amount of time. Some of these diets will indeed take off the pounds, but they may have other undesirable side effects or consequences for your health, particularly if they recommend cutting out an entire food group, such as carbohydrates, altogether. Medical experts agree that a balanced, healthy diet which is kept up not just for a few weeks, but for a whole life time, is the best way to lose weight from your stomach and other problem areas. You should consult your doctor for sensible advice about dieting. He or she will probably recommend reducing your intake of fatty, high-sugar convenience and fast foods, while increasing your consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables, complex carbohydrates, fish and lean meats. It is very important to talk to your doctor before making any drastic changes to your diet, particularly if you think you have been eating unhealthily for a long time.
Diet will not achieve the results you are looking for without exercise. If you have extra fat on your belly, you will need to do aerobic exercises targeted at weight loss as well as specific muscle-strengthening exercises for your stomach. Doing crunches and sit-ups alone to build up your stomach muscles will not be enough. Doctors recommend starting with light but consistent aerobic exercise, such as brisk walking, every day, and moving on to more intense aerobic exercise (such as running or aerobic dance classes) when you become more fit. Why not join a gym? Here you can combine walking or running on the tread mill or cross trainer with exercises targeted specifically at abdominal muscles. Always talk to your doctor before beginning any new exercise program, particularly if you are very overweight or have not exercised for a long time.
Cosmetic or "plastic" surgery procedures such as liposuction or the tummy tuck are seen by many as a quick fix for stomach fat. The fact is, however, that these are invasive, physically taxing procedures which will usually only be offered to patients after diet and exercise have failed to achieve the desired results.
Liposuction - during the liposuction procedure, which can be performed under local or general anesthetic, fat is sucked away from the stomach area using a cannula (a thin hollow tube) and a vacuum suction pump. The procedure often produces good results but does have its side effects and risks. If you are considering this procedure, you should speak to a plastic surgeon for more information.
Tummy tuck - this procedure is particularly popular among women post-pregnancy and in some cases is performed directly after a cesarean section. The tuck involves the removal of excess fat and skin from the middle and lower abdomen (a full tummy tuck) or from the lower abdomen only (a mini tummy tuck). Again, you should speak to a plastic surgeon to get a complete picture of the advantages and disadvantages, and an assessment of your suitability for the procedure.
Remember that any improvements which result from these procedures will only be maintained if you follow a good diet and exercise regularly afterwards.