So this week I thought I'd focus on something that we all have...
Good news though - Fat doesn't make you FAT!
In fact it is essential to our ongoing good health.
Not only does it help our body to absorb vitamins and minerals, it also produces and releases hormones that affect your organs.
But now don't get all complacent about your body fat.
There are 2 different types of fat.
And where they are found is critical.
Just like in real estate, it's a case of Location, Location, Location!
There is subcutaneous fat.
This is the fat that lies below your skin. It keeps you warm and cushions you from a fall or bump. It stores calories.
It is PINCHABLE.
The other type of fat is Visceral Fat.
It stores calories too.
It is found deep inside your abdominal cavity. It surrounds your organs. It is Firm to press.
It is not squishy and pinchable.
When you have too much visceral fat it can increase your LDL cholesterol. That is the bad kind.
It can also increase your blood pressure.
Visceral fat makes your body less sensitive to insulin which can increase your chances of Type 2 diabetes.
How do you know if you have too much visceral fat?
It is all about apples and pears!
What does fruit have to do with it, you ask...
Well think of the shapes of these 2 fruits.
And apple is round and a pear is triangular.
They give you a picture of where fat is stored on your body.
Pears store weight on their hips, thighs and bum.
And it is subcutaneous fat.
It is surface level fat.
Apples on the other hand, store fat around their bellys. Hence the name Belly Fat.
To get a more specific confirmation of whether you could be an apple or pear, there are 2 measurements to take.
The first is your waist measurement.
Feel where your hip bone is.
Feel the top of it and measure around from this point.
Take a couple of measurements
and Don't Hold Your Breath!
You want an accurate measurement!
It is best to have a waist circumference of less than 89cm (35in) if you are a woman.
If you are a man then your waist circumference should be less than 102cm (40in).
The second measurement is your hips.
Measure 20cm down from the top of your hips. That is the point at which to measure your hips.
Take the measurement with your feet together.
Now for a bit of maths!
Take your Waist Circumference and divide it by your Hip Circumference to get your waist to hip ratio.
WC/HC = WHR
e.g. 74cm/97cm = 0.77
Women should have a WHR of less than 0.8 and men should have a ratio of less than 1.
Having a greater ratio of visceral fat is linked to heart disease, type 2 diabetes, strokes and other chronic diseases like Alzheimers.
Belly fat also produces inflammatory molecules that go into your blooldstream.
Continuous long term inflammation puts your body under severe stress.
As a result we become one big hormonal imbalance.
And that is a topic for another day.
So since you can't spot reduce fat around your tummy what can you do?
1) Keep track of your measurements. They are far more telling than the scale ever will be.
I have been tracking my measurement for 19 years, off and on!!
When you lose cm you're losing FAT.
If you're losing Fat then your risk of Type 2 diabetes and other lifestyle diseases are decreased.
2) Sweat each day.
Belly fat responds well to endurance exercise that raises your heart rate. Running, biking, swimming, rowing are going to help.
3) Choose to eat foods that are whole i.e. they aren't packaged and processed - vegetables, lean protein and healthy fats.
4) Sleep - get 7 - 9 hours of sleep per night. Your body needs time to repair itself. Lack of sleep affects your appetite.
And now I'd like to invite you to book a Free 20 minute strategy session so that we can work out some ways to help you move forward & start losing your belly fat.
Click the button below to book your session on my scheduler. It sounds fancy but it's not really!
When you live in the moment and stop worrying about the past and future, then you can sharpen your focus on the present. This is practising mindfulness.
There are many benefits you get from being more mindful, including when it comes to eating.
Why Use Mindfulness for Eating Habits?
Mindfulness is a state of living in the moment. It is where you think about, enjoy and sense what is happening right now. You aren't worrying about the past or future.
It is not only helpful for your mental health and wellbeing, but also for your hunger and appetite.
Here are some ways to use mindfulness to help with your appetite.....
In mindfulness, you learn to exist only in the moment.
What does this mean for you and eating?
When you eat, you get rid of all outside diversions so that you are only thinking about what you are eating.
This means turning off the TV. Not using your cell phone, and not
listening to music.
You want to be in a quiet, peaceful environment where you focus on what you are eating.
Concentrate on the quality of the food, the smells, tastes, and textures.
You can learn to enjoy and appreciate food for what it is. For how it feeds your body, instead of eating without thinking.
You are changing your eating attitudes by developing a mindful eating practice.
2. Learn to Identify Hunger
Mindful eating helps you identify true hunger from other types of hunger.
There are many types, including mouth hunger, mind hunger and emotional hunger.
True hunger is when your stomach sends you cues that it is time to eat.
If you eat at regular times during the day then you would likely get these hunger pangs around the same time each day.
But, if you tend to eat and snack as and when then you might feel constantly hungry. This is because your body doesn’t have a good eating routine.
3. Live a Mindful Life
Not only will mindfulness help when it comes to eating and your appetite, but it helps in other ways too.
You learn to value each moment and focus only on how you feel right now.
You don’t stress yourself out about worries of the future or regrets of the past.
Living in the moment is about accepting your life right now. It is about using that to better yourself physically, emotionally, and mentally.
There are so many advantages to mindfulness even beyond helping with your hunger and appetite.
And when you have mastered mindfulness, you can manage your weight and have a wholesome lifestyle.
Heal Your Relationship with Food
Mindfulness while eating is very close to intuitive eating. You are going to change how you eat, what you choose to eat, and how you feel when you eat.
If you have spent years restricting food and dieting then that is an area that you would need to work.
Mindfulness can help with you that.
It is going to teach you how to recognize your hunger cues, and give you something to focus on while eating.
You won’t simply snack mindlessly. With time it can also help with any binge eating tendencies you might have.
Signs You Have a Damaged Relationship with Food
Many people have a bad relationship with food and don’t realize it. They yo-yo diet or restrict constantly and then go through periods of overeating compulsively.
This can be binge eating, or overeating of foods during certain times, like when they are stressed or have cravings.
Mindfulness is going to help you concentrate more on your eating habits, instead of on what you eat.
Join me in my Facebook group - Being Healthy Made Simple to learn more about how you can become mindful in your eating.
Prep time: 5 minutes
1 frozen banana
1/3 c frozen blueberries
¼ c unsweetened natural yoghurt / coconut yoghurt
1 T nut butter (use tahini if nut free)
1 medjool date, pitted
1 t vanilla essence
½ c coconut water or milk
Toppings: sliced banana, pumpkin and sunflower seeds, cacao nibs, coconut flakes
Blend all the smoothie ingredients in a blender or Nutri-bullet.
It should be quite a thick texture.
Pour into a bowl.
Sprinkle toppings over the top.
BONUS: Foods That Do Satisfy -Grab Your Free 4 Day Meal Plan + Recipes Click Here