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New Study Reveals Effective Way to Control Belly Fat in Men

Tim Boyer's picture
effective weight loss

Controlling the amount of belly fat that accumulates during normal aging is something most men have to eventually deal with—sometimes even if they engage in aerobic exercise on a regular basis. However, a new large-scale study shows that belly fat accumulation can be controlled and even reversed just by adding on this one exercise.


Young men typically can (and do) eat everything and anything in quantities that make most women shake their heads in a mixture of disbelief and the unfairness of having a Y chromosome. However, for many men, all of this fantasy eating ends when he discovers that fighting belly fat is one of the realities of living past 25, and could be the cause of Low-T impotence and a sagging sex life.

According to a recent study published in the journal Obesity, rather than following the trend of belly fat research that has focused on overweight patients or those with Type 2 diabetes, researchers decided to take a look at belly fat accumulation in healthy aging men, 40 and over.

In the study, researchers examined the physical activity, waist circumference and body weight of 10,500 healthy U.S. men aged 40 and over who participated in the Health Professionals Follow-up Study between 1996 and 2008. Analysis focused on a comparison of changes in participants’ activity levels throughout the 12-year period to see which activities had the most effect toward keeping the men’s waistlines under control, as well as a measure of overall body health.

"Because aging is associated with sarcopenia, the loss of skeletal muscle mass, relying on body weight alone is insufficient for the study of healthy aging. Measuring waist circumference is a better indicator of healthy body composition among older adults.” said lead author Rania Mekary, a researcher in HSPH's Department of Nutrition as quoted in a press release by the Harvard School of Public Health.

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What the study revealed was that:

1. Those who increased the amount of time spent in weight training by 20 minutes a day had the least gain in their waistline.

2. Those men who similarly increased the amount of time they spent on moderate-to-vigorous aerobic exercise came in second, while those doing yard work or stair climbing came in third with respect to reduced waistline gain.

3. Those who increased their sedentary behaviors, such as TV watching, had the largest gain in their waistline.

"This study underscores the importance of weight training in reducing abdominal obesity, especially among the elderly," said Frank Hu, professor of nutrition and epidemiology at HSPH and senior author of the study. "To maintain a healthy weight and waistline, it is critical to incorporate weight training with aerobic exercise."

For more on getting a flatter stomach, here are 5 proven tips to help you lose that stubborn belly fat as well as information about a Caralluma Fimbriata extract that is credited for causing a decrease in waist by 2 and ½ inches on average during a 12-week period for some waist-conscious dieters.

Reference: "Weight training, aerobic physical activities, and long-term waist circumference change in men," Rania Mekary, Anders Grøntved, Jean-Pierre Despres, Leandro Pereira De Moura, Morteza Asgarzadeh, Walter Willett, Eric Rimm, Edward Giovannucci, Frank Hu, Obesity, online December 22, 2014.