How to reduce belly fat after 40: 5 tips to get rid of stubborn fat

Is belly fat in your 40s giving you a hard time? There are higher chances of developing belly fat after 40, which can lead to diseases as well. Here are some ways to help you get rid of belly fat after 40.
View All Images Belly fat after 40
How to lose belly fat after 40? Image courtesy: Adobe stock
Arushi Bidhuri Published: 10 Nov 2023, 16:00 pm IST
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Your body goes through a multitude of changes in your 40s. While wisdom and experience are what we admire in your 40s, there is an unwelcome guest who often decides to linger: stubborn belly fat. So, why does it seem like those extra inches around the midsection become increasingly challenging as you traverse through this phase of life? Sitting for long periods of time, lack of exercise, stress, and other conditions can lead to the accumulation of belly fat. As you age, your body goes through many changes and it can become difficult to lose weight. So, it’s better to lose belly fat in your 40s before it’s too late.

If you want to get rid of the fat accumulated in the front, here’s some advice from gynaecologist Dr Pooja Divan.

Why does belly fat increase faster after the 40s?

There are many factors that play a role in causing fat to accumulate in your tummy, especially during your 40s. While everybody differs from another, there are some common reasons that could lead to belly fat in women in their 40s by the expert:

1. Loss of muscle mass

As you age, you tend to lose muscle mass, which is a part of the natural process called sarcopenia. The more you lose muscle mass, the greater the weakness and less mobility. A decrease in your muscle mass also slows down your metabolism and makes it difficult for you to burn calories, as per the data by Harvard Medical School.

Muscle mass
The more muscle mass you have, the more belly fat you will lose. Image courtesy: Adobe stock

2. Hormonal changes

Did you know weight gain or weight loss is driven by your hormones? As age increases, the production of testosterone and estrogen hormones in our body decreases. And unfortunately, this hormone plays an important role in helping build muscle and burn fat.

3. Menopause

The expert says that the estrogen levels are impacted post menopause and perimenopause, and can lead to the accumulation of fat around the belly, according to the study published in the Journal of Mid-life Health.

4 Stress

Stress combined with other hormonal changes can cause belly fat. After 40, your metabolism slows down, muscle mass begins to decrease and even a pinch of stress will only make matters worse. While stress is common among people in today’s time, it is crucial to address and tackle it to avoid complications.

How to lose belly fat in your 40s?

While these factors can lead to belly fat, you can reduce it even after 40 to reduce belly fat.

1. Manage stress

Stress is one of the major causes of weight gain, especially in the abdominal area, according to a study published in the Current Obesity Reports. When we are stressed, our bodies produce a hormone called cortisol, which can increase appetite and cause cravings for high-calorie foods. Cortisol also encourages the body to store belly fat.

There are many ways to manage stress, and what works for one person may not work for another. However, some simple stress-management techniques include things like yoga, meditation, and deep breathing exercises.

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Also Read: Is stress stopping you from losing your stubborn belly fat?

2. Eat a more protein-rich diet

Increasing protein intake can help you reduce belly fat. A study published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition found that eating a diet rich in protein can help you lose weight. So, if you want to reduce all the extra fat around the belly, make sure to include plenty of protein in your diet. You can include lean meats, poultry, fish, tofu, beans, lentils, eggs, and dairy products in your diet. Nuts and seeds like almonds, walnuts, and pumpkin seeds are also good sources of protein.

3. Limit alcohol consumption

If you want to lose belly fat, you may want to consider limiting your alcohol intake. While a glass of wine or beer can be enjoyable, drinking too much can lead to weight gain. Alcohol contains calories that cause you to gain weight and make it difficult to burn fat in the body.

Also Read: Weight loss on your mind? Be mindful of alcohol intake

4. Reduce salt intake

High intake of salt can lead to weight gain. A study published in the Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism found that the higher your salt intake would be, the more weight you will gain in the form of liquid. So, avoid consuming too much salt as your body will retain it, and water adds weight and volume to your abdominal area. By reducing your salt intake, you can help reduce water retention and lose belly fat.

salt intake and weight loss
Reducing salt intake can help you lose weight. Image courtesy: Adobe Stock

5. Physical activity is a must

One of the best ways to keep belly fat in control is exercise. When you do cardio and lift weights, your body uses more energy and will burn more calories. This works even when you’re not even exercising. Additionally, strength training will help you build lean muscle. Muscle burns more calories than fat. In other words, the more muscle you have, the more calories you will burn throughout the day.

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About the Author

Arushi Bidhuri is a journalist with 7 years of experience in writing, editing, and conceptualizing story ideas across different genres, including health and wellness, lifestyle, politics, beauty, fashion, and more. Arushi has a strong connection in the industry that helps her write concise and original stories as she believes in working towards writing pieces that can enlighten people. ...Read More

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