(NaturalNews) Many people who have never had a weight problem suddenly find themselves with extra stomach fat in middle age. For forty and fifty year olds, it is often a lot harder to lose this fat than it is for younger people. This article is a reminder as to why this is the case and what can be done to reduce weight when older.
With age, muscle mass diminishes, especially if exercise is not kept up. The metabolism slows down and this may be exacerbated by crash diets and ineffective exercise programs. Numerous hormones play a role in making some people store more fat than others. Insulin is a hormone greatly connected with weight control.
What is Insulin Resistance?
According to the Medical Nutritional Institute, each cell in the body needs a continuous supply of glucose to satisfy its energy requirements. Glucose, however, cannot penetrate the outer membrane of a cell without the assistance of insulin; insulin plays the role of gatekeeper, opening a "door", so to speak, so that glucose can gain access.
Insulin stimulates the body to convert glucose into fat and then helps to block the fat from being released from the cells. In other words, it converts all a person's excess energy into fat and stores it away into fat cells. Once safely tucked away, insulin guards the fat by blocking its release from the fat cells.
How to Combat Insulin Resistance
Limit carbohydrate intake, especially if your lifestyle is sedentary. Especially important is to avoid refined carbohydrates such as bleached white flour, sugars and processed junk foods. Don't eat carbohydrates late night. Eat lean protein and plenty of fresh, raw vegetables.
Drink plenty of green tea and water in order to boost the metabolism. Research suggests the ECGC found in green tea can boost fat burning and has a multitude of other health benefits.
Exercise increases insulin sensitivity, which makes the body's insulin more effective. This means that a person needs less to get the same job done. By needing less, the body produces less, causing insulin levels to drop.
Exercise, especially weight training, also stimulates the release of a growth hormone, one of the most powerful fat burning substances in the body. Try to get at least 30 minutes of strenuous exercise each day including resistance/weight training. Exercise will also counter the negative effects of stress.
If a person is concerned about his or her weight and suspects insulin resistance may be part of the problem, he or she should see a naturopathic or homeopathic practitioner for a full evaluation and eating plan.
Fleur Hupston is a professional freelance writer. She is passionate about natural, healthy living and is currently studying to be a naturopath. She divides her time between writing for Natural News and various other sites, home schooling her children and studying part time.