It’s really possible to lose fat only from a specific area?
Spot reduction, a fact or fiction? Many fitness experts newly qualified and new to training would say yes. If you work that area you will burn the fat there. This however is not the case.
Exercising the musculature in the area you wish to reduce fat by performing higher numbers of reps to “tone” that area does not work. This is a very common misconception.RELATED: RECOMMENDED PLANS FOR YOU
Spot reduction through exercising the specific area, for example performing Tricep extensions to lose arm fat won’t work… But there are ways you can help the fat loss process in the areas your aiming for.
Firstly you need to have a fat loss approach to your training. A combination of long slow distance Cardio and Interval based training, with regular resistance training session,s focusing on large muscle groups with compound multi join movements such as: deadlift, squat bench and shoulder press.
This type of training starts the hormonal responses that lead to fat loss from the body with an all over approach, starting to reduce from the extremities first and the central core later.
Targeting lower back fat through hormone balance and manipulation
Hormones are chemicals that dictate and control everything in our body. Temperature, skin colour, how we feel when we wake up, how strong we are… everything.
Why do we hold fat in the lower back area and why is it so hard to shift? Hormones are responsible for excess fat storage, and for the lower back and torso area the ones to look at are cortisol and insulin.
Insulin is like a key that opens up the locks on your body’s cells so that glucose (blood sugar) can get inside and be used for energy.
Insulin is created and released from the pancreas once blood sugar elevates after a meal. Eating high sugar foods, too, often spiking your insulin can lead to fatigue of the pancreas and a reduction in insulin production and decreased insulin sensitivity.
Decreased insulin sensitivity means your insulin is not produced in adequate amounts and does not work properly. Leading to elevated blood sugar levels and potentially diabetes.
To help target the fat in this area we need to support the pancreas and restore blood sugar regulation. This is helped by supplementing specific vitamins and minerals.
These vitamins and minerals are: zinc, chromium and vitamin b complex.
Zinc and chromium should both be taken in picolinate form as these are the most absorbable forms of the minerals.
Zinc and chromium help support the pancreas in insulin production, restoring the body’s natural management of blood sugar. Chromium should be taken twice a day at breakfast and again half way through the day. Zinc should be taken last thing at night, away from all other substances to ensure maximum absorption.
Vitamin b complex will help support your adrenal glands and increase energy levels helping reduce sugar cravings. Best taken at breakfast and again half way through the day.
Cortisol is a stress hormone. Many things you do increase your natural cortisol production. Emotional stress increases cortisol. When you are in a deep sleep and your alarm clock goes off and wakes you up with a shock, this increases your cortisol. Not enough sleep, increases your cortisol. Exercise increases your cortisol.
Elevated cortisol levels are directly linked to increased back fat storage.
Now as you can see, these things are just a part of our lives that we can often not avoid. But there are measures we can take to reduce the impact of cortisol damage.
Antioxidants reduce free radical damage, reducing oxidative stress on the system. A good universal antioxidant that also helps with blood sugar management is “Alpha lipoic acid”, ideally taken before food so it is present in the system to help reduce the stress in the pancreas.
Rhodihola rosea is a herb that also helps reduce the production of cortisol by calming nerves balancing stress levels. Many people take to mellow out when in stressfull situations, others take daily to help stay calm. Be aware that some people may be hyper sensitive to Rhodihola and it may have the opposite effect in them acting as a stimulant instead.
If you can tolerate Rhodihola, it should be taken twice daily, in the morning and evening.
With all this hormone manipulation and balancing methods, blood sugar management will be supported and improved and lower back fat will also be greatly reduced.