What can I do if I’m shaped like an apple?
Some people accumulate just as much or more abdominal fat internally around and between their organs in the same way they accumulate fat right beneath the skin. Unfortunately, the intra-abdominal fat (also called Visceral Fat) cannot be removed with either a tummy tuck or liposuction, leaving only one alternative: the dreaded diet and exercise!
You can roughly measure your visceral fat by leaning forward and grabbing the loose skin & fat layer. This external tissue you can grab is what can be removed with surgery, such as a Tummy Tuck (removes stretched skin and subcutaneous fat of the lower abdomen) or Liposuction (removes subcutaneous fat). The tight tissue behind it that you cannot grasp is the abdominal wall and visceral fat. Another way to measure your visceral fat is to lie down flat on your back; external fat will shift to the sides, but the visceral fat will stay mounded up centrally.
To add insult to injury, visceral fat tends to accumulate more with aging. Growth Hormone levels decline as you age. Cortisol levels become less controlled or even elevated over time or with added stress. Both of these things lead to the body storing excess fat around the abdominal organs.
In addition to weight loss, you can naturally help to increase your Growth Hormone levels and decrease your visceral fat by doing the following:
1) Decrease sugar intake to control insulin bursts that can cause the stunting of growth hormones.
2) Spend more time in the roost. Aim for eight hours a night of good sleep.
3) Control your response to the stressors in your life. Yes, your kids might be making you fat!
4) HIIT (High intensity Interval Training) (for example, short bursts of running). HIIT has been shown to increase your growth hormone levels by 53% over a 6 week period.
5) Melatonin at the high dose of 5mg can help increase growth hormone levels and aid in restful sleep, but would have to be continued long term.