It shouldn’t be surprising that most of us have belly fat–even those with flat abs. It’s normal. Yet, too much belly fat is where it gets dangerous.

There is a difference between the fat under your skin and the visceral fat that surrounds your lungs, heart, liver and other organs. We all worry about muffin tops or that extra ripple we wish we didn’t have.

On the other hand, doctors are concerned about fat in the midsection. This is because a large amount of belly fat increases the risk factor for type 2 diabetes, some types of cancers and heart disease.

Visceral belly fat doesn’t happen overnight. If you’re ready to trim your waistline, continue reading to learn more.

You’re Doing the Wrong Things

According to Business Bellies, one of the most effective ways to lose belly fat includes a 30-day reset. Over time, you might have established bad habits around eating and exercising.

Perhaps you work too much to even care. Well, you will start caring once you have to go to the hospital. What really needs to happen is an intervention.

You must retrain your body and mind to start living a healthy lifestyle. Treating your body well doesn’t mean you need to eat rice cakes all day.

It means making the transition to start looking and feeling better. You can’t put a price tag on being in shape and having a lot of energy to accomplish your goals.

Your Workouts Aren’t Producing Results

Cardio alone isn’t enough to banish the extra bulge. You need to include weight training, as well.

With weights, you increase your muscle mass–which, helps to burn more fat. Since muscle burns more calories than fat, you will naturally burn more calories throughout the day.

Plus, muscle makes your body more shapely too. And, you’ll notice the improvement in strength, coordination and energy.

You Eat Too Many Processed Foods

There isn’t any question that many of us like chips, soda, ice cream and more. These are the things we may eat watching our favorite TV shows, at a party or at the movies.

Yet, processed foods increase the inflammation in our bodies. Then, it makes it even more difficult to lose belly fat.

The good news is whole grains have anti-inflammatory properties to help you lose the belly fat. Try to increase your intake of whole grains, while decreasing your intake of processed foods.

Take it step by step, if needed. Your body needs fuel, and you will start to enjoy eating healthy foods.

You Give in to Stress

There’s a lot of freedom that comes with being an adult, and a lot of responsibilities too. You’ve got work deadlines, bills, kids and more.

Well, stress contributes to belly fat. For starters, you might turn to comfort foods to relieve your anxiety.

Yet, stress also increases the hormone called cortisol which has been linked to more visceral fat.

Final Thought

We all dream of having flat, chiseled abs. You don’t have to have a supermodel body to be healthy. Still, you must try to lose that belly fat to ensure longevity.