Can't get rid of my big belly

Donovan Grant

Monday, October 30, 2017

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Dear Donovan,

I'm a man who has been gaining weight in my belly for a few years and now it is out of control. I have this big belly and cannot get rid of it. I suffer from high blood pressure. I am 79 years old. It is now causing me to have back pain. Please tell me what to do.

Your body loses muscle mass as you age, and fat starts to pile up in the mid-section. This increase in belly fat is very dangerous and is a health concern. Belly fat increases the risk of several chronic diseases like diabetes and hypertension. It is therefore important to effect lifestyle changes to get rid of the extra belly fat and keep it off.

In general, when you consume more food or calories than you use up, you will gain weight. In women who have not reached menopause, the fat usually gets lodged in the buttocks, hips and thighs. However, as the hormones change during menopause, the fat tends to accumulate in the stomach. Men are prone to store fat in their bellies for their entire lives.

As men age there is the tendency to store fat faster in the belly region. In addition, the metabolism of both men and women slows down with age, and their muscle mass is reduced. Age causes the body composition to be more fat and less muscle. This loss of muscle mass also reduces the metabolic rate. As you age it is possible to put on weight even if you are eating the same amount as you did when you were younger. Extra calories consumed will show up in the belly.

A balanced diet with fruits, vegetables, vegetable juices, lean protein, yoghurt and whole grains is much better than junk food in helping to keep the belly fat off. It is important to keep a food chart to remind you of your daily calorie requirements based on your age, gender and activity level. Eating fewer calories than your required amount might even lead to some weight loss.

It is also important to watch out for stress eating, which can cause you to pile on belly fat. In addition, as you age there is the tendency to feel pain in different areas, which can cause a reduction in physical activity. This reduction in activity invariably leads to weight gain in the stomach region. Some form of mild exercise, such as walking, would be beneficial.

If you want to maintain good health at your age, you will have to make some changes. You will have to eat healthy and reduce your calories. If you lose weight, you will lose it from all parts of your body.

In addition, I would suggest that you do a detox programme. This will help to get that belly down. In addition, do 15-30 minutes of moderate cardiovascular exercise as often as you can. Doing muscle- strengthening exercises for two days a week would also be helpful. However, make sure to check with your doctor first.

Good luck.

We will answer your weight-related questions

Are you struggling to lose weight, or just need some advice on living a healthier life? Tell us about your health issues and we'll have nutritionist and wellness coach Donovan Grant answer them for you. Grant has over 12 years' experience in the fitness industry and is the owner of DG's Nutrition and Wellness Centre, 39 Lady Musgrave Road. Call him at 876-286-1363. E-mail questions to




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