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Dangers of Belly Fat
Your father or grandfather may have boasted about having a rotund belly. It showed that they were good providers, able to bring home enough money to feed the family well. It proved that they had married a good woman who cooked hearty, delicious meals. Your father or grandfather might have also talked about a condition they called hardening of the arteries. This condition "scientifically known as atherosclerosis" is common in men with potbellies. It can also be fatal, because men with this condition are more likely to suffer heart attack and stroke at an early age. Excess fat around the waist also raises the risk of diabetes, high blood pressure and sleep apnoea.
How a Pot Belly Happens
While many people refer to a round body on a man as a "beer belly," alcohol in and of itself is not the cause of a potbelly. While studies have shown that binge drinking will contribute to this belly fat, the bottom line is the weight is caused by eating more than your body can burn off. Men simply have a hormonal tendency to gain more weight around the midsection than other parts of the body.
Knowing if You Are at Risk
Many men, particularly those over 35, have love handles or a bit of a potbelly. It is natural to want to lose that extra flab so that you look and feel your best. Not every man with extra belly fat is at risk for severe health issues. The men who stand the greatest possibility for health risks are generally those with waists over forty inches. Measure your waist right around your belly button without sucking in your stomach to see how you fare.
Losing the Gut
To rid yourself of a potbelly, start by doing cardio every single day. Walk your dog, get off the bus a stop too early, park your car farther from the office door or take the stairs instead of the elevator. Exercises that build your core muscles such as planking and push-ups will help tighten your "inner girdle." Even intentionally tightening your stomach muscles and holding them in for short periods will help. At mealtime fill up on broth-based soups and salads with the dressing on the side before your main meal, and choose healthier snacks such as raw veggies, whole-wheat crackers with low-fat cheese or baked crisps. Before long, you will be looking for ways to show off that toned tummy.