A lot of Egyptians suffer from belly fat – men and women alike. People go on strict diets, perform 100’s of crunches everyday but when it comes to middle-section fat, the answer lies in your “insulin” levels.
Understanding Insulin’s Role:
Insulin is a hormone made in the pancreas and it plays an important role in metabolism. When blood glucose levels rise after a meal, insulin is released to help the body cells utilize glucose to produce energy and the excess glucose is transformed to fat to be stored.
Belly fats is always accompanied by a condition called insulin resistance. Insuin resistance occurs when the insulin receptors in a cell become less sensitive to insulin, resulting in an inefficient lowering of glucose levels after eating. There is always a rise in insulin level after a sugary meal. When insulin levels are chronically elevated, the insulin receptors become less sensitive to insulin, resulting in a need for even more insulin. This is accompanied by the accumulation of visceral fat or belly fat! Those fat cells are more likely to be insulin resistant than other cells in the body and do not use glucose for energy but store it as fats!
Defining Glycemic Index:
Generally, you need to eat low glycemic index foods. The glycemic index is a scale that ranks food based on how fast and how high they can raise your blood sugar thus raising your insulin levels. Low GI foods are foods that have GI 55 or less for example: apples, bananas, broccoli, brown rice, carrots, cherries, cucumber, grapefruit, lettuce.
Proteins and fat are not listed in the glycemic index because they do not raise insulin levels unless additional ingredients like bread or sugar are added.
Fruit juice is often perceived as healthy, however what many people fail to realize is that fruit juice is also loaded with sugar so while fruits can be medium or low GI, fruit juice is considered high GI , thus raising blood sugar level and increasing belly fats.
When you drink a large glass of fruit juice, the large amount of sugar in the juice gets absorbed very quickly leading to insulin shooting, a lot of fructose arrives to the liver which is turned to fat and results in insulin resistance.
Controlled metabolic studies show that liquid sugar like fruit juices and sodas can cause insulin resistance , elevates triglycerides and cholesterol and cause belly fat accumulation.
Whole fruits contain sugar bonded within fibrous structure that break down slowly during digestion and in small amounts.
Diet sodas: A new study published in the journal of the American Geriatrics Society found that people who drank diet soda gained almost triple the abdominal fat over nine years compared to those who did not. Though scientists are puzzling through mechanisms by which diet soda seems to increase belly fats, they have some suggestions. Sugar free sodas contain substances that sweeten up soda at 200-600 times the sweetness of regular sugar.
Although regular sugar has high calories but it triggers satiety, your body knows that a sweet taste means you are ingesting energy in the form of calories. Artificial sweeteners confuse our bodies and weaken the link in our brains between sweetness and calories. That can lead to more craving for sweeter treats. Another research suggests that artificial sweeteners are associated with drop in the appetite regulating hormone ( leptin) which leads to more hunger.
If you need to reduce belly fat, you need eat low GI foods like apples, bananas, carrots, broccoli, whole wheat bread and pasta while avoiding sodas, and white wheat products.