Fatty acid is to be used as energy for fight or flight which is a state our body goes in to prepare us for danger and make us alert; but because the stress we are undergoing is mental, we do not make use of that energy, instead our body releases cortisol to help gather the fatty acids back. The problem is, the cortisol in the body just seems to love the abdomen so it gathers the fat and send it all to the abdomen instead of other body cells for storage.Reasons why we have excess belly fat

A lot of people – myself included- seem to have the nearly “perfect” bodies. Our arms and thighs are somewhat good and we might even pass off as “skinny” but our stomach just won’t let us get away with it. Besides ruining outfits and making us feel unattractive, belly fat is also dangerous to our health. It increases our risk for type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and some studies have shown that women with excess belly fat are at risk of developing breast cancer and gall stones. There is no apparent reason why our abdomen gets fat before other parts of the body although, some studies have shown that it is mostly due to the hormones in our body. Other factors that we can actually control, cause fat accumulation, these factors are listed below:

Lack of sleep

Getting just the right amount of sleep is crucial for your health. Lack of sleep affects our body negatively in so many ways and excess sleep is also not healthy. Studies have been done to prove that lack of sleep causes weight gain. Short sleep or poor quality sleep may lead to weight gain and fat storage in our body. And it always starts with the stomach. The same studies also show that excess sleep can lead to weight gain and abdominal fat. The right amount of sleep we need is 8-9 hours per night.


The stress hormones in our body plays a significant role in the control of belly fat. When we are stressed, our body increases the production of adrenaline which signals the fat cells to release their hormones.


When alcohol is consumed in small amounts, it acts as a stimulant and helps us “loosen up” but when consumed in large amounts, it acts as a depressant which slows us down. It slows our body’s metabolic process this includes the fat burning process in our body. Alcohol contains a lot of calories (depending on the type of alcohol being consumed). Also, when we consume alcohol it makes it more difficult to burn the fat that was already in our body as it temporarily inhibits lipoid oxidation. So previous calories do not get burned and new calories (from the alcohol itself) is immediately stored in our abdomen then we end up with excess fat.

Other factors

Other obvious factors like sedentary lifestyle, sugary beverages, carbonated sodas, low protein diets also cause accumulation of fat in our abdomen.

Healthy lifestyle choices can help us manage/control the accumulation of fat in our abdominal region. Exercise more, eat healthy (no carbs after 6pm), reduce alcohol intake, manage stress to control the stress hormone and reduce alcohol intake.


This article was written by Faith Onaji

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