Regular exercising like running is a simple remedy to getting rid of the belly fat WHILE many many men consider potbellies a symbol of good life, scientific research shows that the pot belly, medically known as abdominal obesity, has a strong correlation with heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and a host of other health complications. Dr Dan Kaye, a senior lecturer at Makerere University College of Health Sciences says the much cherished pot belly causes hypertension, heart failure and later on kidney failure. Just like general obesity, central obesity (belly fat) comes with many health risks. The excessive weight exerts pressure on the spine and one develops backache. Ones gait may also give in as the weight burdens the legs, Kaye says. It also has an impact on ones physique. At 30 years of age, one may look older. Personal items like pants, T-shirts and other clothing no longer fit and are either sliding down your hips or hanging up when they should comfortably fit. However, the worst bit of this pot belly is when it leads to mission impossible when sexual duty calls. Mark Teich, a researcher, in an article published in the September-October 2007 edition of the journal Psychology Today, warns that men who are overweight tend to generate excessive heat, which leads to a reduction in the level of testosterone in their sperm. The bigger a mans belly, the greater the testosterone problem. Medics further indicate that heart disease is also directly associated with erectile dysfunction, a problem many middle-aged men are prone to, with its embarrassing consequences. Yet nothing could hurt male ego more, perhaps irreversibly, than for him to get ready for action and fail to perform. According to Dr Kaye, Pot bellies, also commonly called beer bellies are synonymous with people who are above 35 years of age because they have made money and for many, the idea of leisure is drinking beer irrespective of the tight work schedule that leaves no room for exercise. Beer has a lot of excess carbohydrates and when it converts to fat, it concentrates around the belly. Worse still, people who drink tend to eat a lot of fried or fatty foods like pork, chips, chicken, sausages, which have a high fat concentration, he says. Kaye says people associate obesity with age and beer. These are just part of the problem. They build over time. Some drive and can hardly walk. Some have given up on fitness exercise and macho physique as they age. Others eat like they are chasing life expectancy, he argues. You could be wondering, but the village dude only enjoys his Malwa (local brew) and goes back to feast on the regular posho and beans. Malwa is a product of maize, sorghum or millet. It is also alcohol because of the yeast. All these have excess carbohydrates that later convert into fat, he says. According to an online source, a man, natural fat storage area is in the lower abdominal region. The sex hormones cause and determine the potbelly thus watch out for additives to the natural indicator, it says. For females, sex hormones cause excess fat to get stored in buttocks, thighs and hips. However, at menopause, the excess fat migrates to your waist and as women grow older, it is stored in the belly. Working out and keeping fit in the early years helps strengthen the central muscles. Nevertheless, for those with potbellies, Dr.Kaye offers valuable advice: Reduce excessive fat and carbohydrates in your diet. Many think that its beer that causes the potbelly, but it is just one of the factors. When exercising, isometric exercises like jogging and evening walks are effective, he says. The immediate cause of obesity is net energy imbalance-the consumption of more usable calories than we can eliminate, Kaye adds. He says while central obesity can be obvious just by looking at someones potbelly, the severity of central obesity is determined by taking waist and hip measurements. Not that you are off the hook with your extension. A doctor or fitness expert can best advise. Take care of your eating habits, make the right choice of food, add fibre to your diet, drink plenty of water, stay away from artificial sweeteners and above all, exercise regularly. How to get rid of belly fat Start your day with a healthy breakfast and end with a light supper, three hours prior to bed. While eating be slow and chew every bit of the food. In order to have a good diet plan, consult a dietician. Losing belly fat requires that you take in fewer calories than you burn. Include fibrous food in your diet. Fiber in the food helps ensure smooth bowel movement hence flattening the tummy. An adult should drink at least eight glasses of water in a day. Opt for fresh fruit and vegetable juices as well, but not sugary drinks. The alcohols found in sugar-free products should be avoided, in case you have a pot belly. This is because they are not absorbed completely and end up fermenting in the intestine, leading to diarrhea, gas or even distended abdomen. Exercising daily can yield excellent results. A full-body training programme for both cardiovascular and resistance exercise will deliver better, faster results. It is easier and better to jog early in the morning when the body and mind are relaxed and rested other than evening jogs when ones body is tired and stressed out. A morning jog is twice as much more effective than the evening jog. Other altenative forms of exercising include swimming, cycling, skipping and other sport games.