Most people have heard that stress will cause weight gain, and it’s being proven scientifically. However, some individuals end up losing weight when they go through stress, and they end up dealing with fatigue and a lowered immune system.
As women get close to menopause, they often start putting on some weight. Usually, this weight ends up going on the upper body, the thighs, the belly or the hips. However, men aren’t as likely to end up gaining weight in their lower body, but they are more likely to end up with excess belly fat.
Weight Gain Differs for Men and Women
Men and women have different hormones, and this makes them gain weight in different ways. Estrogen usually results in fat storage in the lower body, and women have higher amounts of estrogen.
However, when women get closer to menopause, the body doesn’t produce as much estrogen, and then the fat migrates to the upper body and the abdomen, which is why women who are nearing menopause or post menopause have higher percentages of belly fat.
For men, they have low estrogen levels, which can result in belly fat gain, even though testosterone helps to keep their percentage of body fat lower. Usually, men have an apple shape, and women usually have a pear shape.
Most people know these facts, but Dr. Eric Berg has taken a new approach to weight loss and fat gain. He notes that there are four different types of belly fat and bodies:
① The Liver belly type
Many people who store fat in the belly have a liver belly, which is often called a pot belly. This is usually characterized by slim legs and arms, as well as a lot of fat that sticks out in the stomach area. Individuals dealing with the liver belly often deal with flatulence, bloating, digestive issues, soreness, and back pain.
Men are more likely to have this type of belly, but some women do have the liver belly. This belly often appears because of low glucose levels. While most people have higher blood sugar levels in the morning, these individuals have low levels of blood glucose when they wake up.
They feel hungry and irritable, and the hunger stays around, even after they eat. This occurs because bile is not properly released, so the food they eat isn’t broken down the way it should be. Even after eating, this makes individuals with a liver belly still feel hungry, and they often crave sugar.
What to Do:
To lose that belly fat, individuals with a liver belly need to begin restoring the function of the liver, and they also need to include more protein in their diet.
The protein helps to control blood sugar. Complex carbs should be eaten instead of simple carbs, and alcoholic drinks and sodas should be eliminated from the diet. To lose this belly, the liver must be able to detox, so drinking plenty of water is important.
② The Thyroid belly type
Individuals who have a thyroid belly usually have fat distributed throughout their whole body, from the shoulders and neck to their legs. Usually the accumulation of extra weight occurs because estrogen levels are too high.
This causes the thyroid to slow down, resulting in weight gain. However, fat storage isn’t the only problem for these individuals. Other problems they experience include cold extremities, brittle fingernails, poor circulation, and thinning hair.
People with this type of belly usually crave fats and sweets, and they often feel tired, even after a full night of rest. The skin on their arms is generally saggy, and their outer eyebrows are usually a bit thin.
What to Do:
To deal with a thyroid belly effectively, it’s important to get estrogen levels back to normal, and the thyroid has to begin functioning again. Men can have this type of belly, but it is most common in women.
③ The Adrenal belly type
Individuals who have an adrenal belly usually deal with weight gain during times of stress. This usually results in a saggy stomach that begins to droop towards the legs.
Both men and women can gain a lot of fats around the middle during long periods of stress. In many cases, this results in fibromyalgia, fatigue and low back pain.
Since these people deal with a lot of stress, they often deal with excessive worrying, poor sleep habits, brain fog, and poor memory. Some even deal with salt cravings in the evenings.
Those dealing with an adrenal belly often seem edgy and irritable, and they often over train and try going on restrictive diets to lose weight, but this only leads to more stress.
What to Do:
To deal with the adrenal belly, it’s important to reduce stress. To deal with cravings, a light snack should be eaten a couple hours before bedtime. Getting plenty of rest is important too.
A body that is tired needs plenty of sleep, and fatigued adrenal glands need to have plenty of rest, so getting a good night of rest each night can help individuals lose this belly fat.
④ The Ovary belly type
Only women end up with the ovary belly, and usually, these women end up with lower stomach fat and saddlebags. Too much estrogen causes this type of belly, and fat storage in these areas often occurs after having a baby because of the estrogen spikes and other hormonal changes.
Women with an ovary belly are more likely to deal with headaches, heavy periods, acne and facial hair. They may also deal with PMS, bloating, ovarian cysts and depression. During menstruation, knee pain, hip pain, and lower back pain may occur.
During the cycle, water retention often occurs, and mood swings, night sweats, hot flashes and low libido may also accompany the other symptoms.
What to Do:
Balancing hormone levels and dealing with the ovarian cysts is the best way to deal with an ovary belly. Women should focus on eating a diet that includes healthy, natural foods, and fats and protein should come mostly from vegetable sources since many animal products are high in hormones.