Muffin top, aka love handles that unsightly spare tire of flabby fat that pushes out of the top of your pants, giving your middle the appearance of the poofy top of a muffin. Often directed toward women, many men, teens and even kids have muffin tops.
For men and women alike, their hormones begin to fluctuate in their mid- to late-30s. Hormonal imbalances, too much stress, skimping on sleep, insulin resistance, excessive aerobic/cardio exercise, the wrong exercise program, skipping breakfast, eating more than your share of carbs, and drinking too much alcohol all contribute to muffin top. Aside from being less than attractive, carrying extra weight around your middle increases risk of heart disease, insulin resistance and diabetes, cancer and dementia.
What can you do to get rid of muffin top? The answer: consistency. Strength training, eat real food, detox periodically, prioritize sleep, reduce toxic load, avoid inflammatory foods and manage your stressors.
Muffin top and strength training are not breaking news. Is strength training two times a week for 30 minutes enough to fight muffin top? We all know it takes a little bit more dedication than one hour of exercise per week to change your body and lose fat.
Genetics are a small portion of the equation. Lifestyle, physiological stress, personal choices and responsibility complete the equation. People who don’t experience the muffin top phenomena will most likely always be in terrific shape because of their decision to make structured, appropriate exercise, quality nutrition, stress management, healthy gut function, self-care and plenty of rest part of their lifestyle. In addition, this individual honors their body and has a healthy relationship with self and food.
Doing the same thing, whether it’s your exercise program, diet and nutrition plan, or otherwise, and expecting a different result is labeled insanity! Excuses, denial and lack of responsibility…..it’s the easy way. And, the media doesn’t help. Morning television news segments, women’s magazines and the majority of gyms/trainers promote workouts focused on incredibly light weights, high rep schemes, and excessive aerobic/cardio exercise without attention to nutrient-dense foods, rest, sleep, healthy functioning adrenals and lifestyle modifications.
All too often, women in particular resort to liposuction. All this does is redistribute the fat elsewhere between the viscera tissue. In addition, liposuction increases inflammation and doubles your risk of CVD and cancer!
In reality, it takes a commitment and consistency! A smart metabolic exercise program, nutrient-dense foods, balanced hormones, plenty of rest and quality sleep, looking deeper into gut health and ruling out infections, stress management and adequate hydration to see the kind of results that you want.
Get Rid of Love Handles and Melt Your Muffin Top Permanently! Here’s how….
- Boost intensity and reduce the duration of cardio sessions, and instead perform interval style workouts for no more than 30 minutes at a time.
- Consume an appropriate amount of organic protein throughout the day and especially at breakfast.
- Rule out Candida, bacterial and viral infections that cause excess inflammation, parasites, heavy metal body burdens and toxic overload
- Address underlying emotions, psychological stressors and anxiety.
- Focus on Fat Loss, not Weight Loss. Focus on how your clothes fit; how you look and feel. Do not focus on a number on the scale.
- Follow the 90% rule. Boost your metabolism and eat smaller meals stopping before you’re full. Include clean, healthy nutritious meals 90% of the time by fueling your body with a variety of organic protein sources, fibrous veggies, salads, leafy greens, berries, healthy fats (nuts, olive oil, coconut oil, avocado), green drinks, green tea and plenty of water.
- Heal your gut and address digestive dysfunction.
- Stop counting calories! Instead, count nutrients. Keep a food journal.
- Include de-stressing yin-style exercises such as yoga, qi gong and tai chi. You’ll experience more energy, less fat around your midsection and a more conscious approach to life if you practice this type of exercise at least one a week
- Balance hormones, specifically insulin, cortisol and thyroid hormones
- Rule out food allergies or sensitivities
What works about this plan: It will boost your metabolism, transform your body, increase confidence, AND you can enjoy eating without feeling guilty.
Walk into any gym, and where are the majority of the females? On the treadmill or the elliptical. Or, this is one I love, on the exercise bike reading a magazine and chewing gum. And, if they are in the weight room, most are still using the pink dumbbells.
According to a study presented at the 56th American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) Annual Meeting in Seattle, Robert J. Petrella, M.D., Ph.D., FACSM stated, “To really make an impact, patients need a personalized exercise plan or a recommendation to a qualified professional who can guide them along the way. We are also advocating that these health care providers recommend their patients to certified health and fitness professionals for proper exercise counseling. This education for health care providers needs to start prior to practice-in residency curriculum or even earlier.”
Excess weight and the desire to lose it is often an opportunity to evolve. Something inside of you needs to shift and transform. Lastly, you have got to pay attention to your diet and start moving appropriately if you want to change your body and transform your life!
As a holistic nutritionist, fitness & fat loss expert, and functional health practitioner, my philosophy is to identify the root cause of any underlying health issues, slowly "peel away the layers of the onion," and design a healing protocol and comprehensive LIFESTYLE plan specific to your unique biochemistry so you can heal, experience vibrant health, balanced hormones and look, think and feel better than ever for a lifetime. I consult with men and women around the world and with clients locally in the Phoenix area. Schedule a free 15-minute consultation!
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