Losing body fat usually means lowering your insulin levels. Obesity in adults > 35 years of age, especially characterized by larger waist circumference, is almost certainly the result of Hyperinsulinemia and/or insulin resistance (which leads to hyperinsulinemia). (Insulin resistance is also the cause of Type 2 diabetes.) I am 42 and I was big for quite some time. I was also Type 2 diabetic once.
For me, the best and most effective weight loss occurred when I did three things:
- Exercise program
- Intermittent Fasting (this REALLY REALLY worked well for me, like holy cow!)
- Changed my food to lower glycemic index options for majority of the food
Any one of those by themselves can improve insulin sensitivity and/or lower the total amount of insulin that the pancreas releases daily. Combining them has amazing effects. However, it takes a bit of practice to be able to fast for 16+ hours, if you’re not used to it. But, during the fasting state, your insulin levels are the lowest they will possibly be, glycogen starts to deplete from the liver, and the adipose tissue begins to release fat from storage.
To oversimplify: if insulin is above a certain threshold, the body’s cells will burn carbohydrates for fuel and fat will not come out of adipose tissue. Even if other hormones are trying to free the fat, insulin is so potent it will block fat from being released and used for energy.
So to lose excess mid-level body fat (visceral body fat), you must lower insulin levels. This is the science we’ve known about for decades. It’s not controversial. And there are many different techniques to lowering insulin. Exercise, fasting, eating less carbs, eating ketogenic diet, eating food with lower GI, taking Metformin, are just some examples.
Once we understand that body fat is regulated like all other tissue in the body, hormones, and which specific hormone is the most influential, then we have a better framework to deal with excess body fat. Whether you want to count calories or not… whether you want to do 6 small meals a day or 1 giant meal a day… it’s all about insulin. However you can lower your insulin, that’s what will work best for you.
Lastly, the scale picks up changes in lean body tissue, water, contents in the gut, and body fat. Keep that in mind when looking at the scale. It won’t tell you which of these contents went up or down. It only tells you how much mass x gravitational constant you exert on Earth at that given time, not necessarily how much body fat you have or how healthy you are.