Understanding and addressing these six issues might give you a defined body, abundant energy, a good mood, and a clear mind.

Photo by Norexy art from Pexels

This story is about the problem of two billion people suffering from metabolic disorders. As documented by WHO, “obesity is one of today’s most blatantly visible — yet most neglected — public health problems. Obesity has nearly tripled since 1975. Almost two billion people are overweight.”

I recently presented at a local conference sponsored by a holistic health community. This story summarizes the key point of the presentation with takeaway points to make it worthwhile for those who need to understand six critical aspects of healthy weight management. 

I am pleased that my canonical content on this topic made a significant impact on readers and was recognized on this platform in the weight loss topic too. I’m also grateful to my subscribers, who gained inspiration from my content and customized some of my bespoke solutions for their needs. 

My definition of healthy weight management is to optimize fat, muscle, and bone profiles to maintain cellular, metabolic, and mental health with lifestyle choices, manifesting in a defined body, a good mood, sufficient energy, and mental clarity. 

Through years of observations in the ups and downs of weight management, I identified four patterns of why people cannot visceral fat and instead lose precious muscles. I documented them in a previous article so that I won’t repeat the details here. 

Here are the four reasons which touch on the six points that I will cover in this article. 

1 — You might have excessive stress leading to chronic inflammation.

2 — You might not be consuming enough bioavailable proteins.

3 — You are not doing sufficient resistance training.

4 — You are not recovering timely and doing more exercise.

Maintaining muscle and losing visceral fat is not too complex. The principles are well documented in the literature and practiced by millions. However, still, some of us lose muscle and gain visceral fat due to incorrect practices.

In this article, I present six factors contributing to visceral fat gain and potential muscle loss, especially as we age. To address these problems, I offer practical solutions using healthy lifestyle habits that take a holistic health approach, providing actionable takeaways.

Some readers may have tried the conventional advice of eating less and exercising more but have not seen the desired results. As someone who has also struggled with metabolic syndrome and prediabetes, I have compassion for their situation. 

While the eat less, move more approach may work for some, it’s not a one-size-fits-all solution. Factors like hormones, toxins, pathogens, stress, inflammation, mood, and emotions affect fat loss and muscle retention. 

Therefore, I examine the issue from various angles to provide practical tips to shrink visceral fat while maintaining lean muscles.

My points are not prescriptive and should not be taken as health advice. Instead, they are principle-oriented solutions that can create awareness for customization based on individual conditions and requirements. 

By following a holistic health approach, you can achieve a defined and trimmed body even after middle age, although fat loss and muscle retention naturally become more challenging as we get older.

Belly growth can manifest for two reasons: visceral fat accumulation and bloating, causing stomach distension. I have documented bloating and stomach distension in a previous article. The points presented in this article can also help address bloating.

My focus in this article is on lowering visceral fat and maintaining lean muscles using a six-pronged holistic health approach that can contribute to metabolic, hormonal, neurological, and mental health. 

By addressing these factors, you can improve your metabolic health and achieve a physique that can give you energy and motivation to enjoy your life.

1 — Solve hormonal issues.

As we age, our metabolism slows down, and our hormones are more prone to imbalance, making it crucial to balance and optimize them for healthy weight management. 

A hormonal imbalance might lead to weight gain and muscle loss. Hormones, running the metabolic show in the body, are critical for fat mobilization, metabolism, burning, and storage, and when they become imbalanced, our midsections grow, and our muscles weaken (Sarcopenia).

Insulin, cortisol, sex, and growth hormones are the most influential hormones that affect fat gain and muscle loss. 

Insulin, for example, is an anabolic and storage hormone that distributes blood glucose to muscle and fat cells. When imbalanced, insulin contributes to fat accumulation, but when balanced, it aids in fat loss and muscle growth. 

In contrast, cortisol is another master hormone that affects fat metabolism and muscle catabolism, making it essential to optimize it.

 Neurotransmitters like dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, GABA, acetylcholine, norepinephrine, adrenaline, glutamate, and histamine also affect metabolism.

Other hormones like leptin, CCK, adiponectin, glucagon, growth hormone, and thyroid hormones also can affect fat metabolism and mobilization. 

Leptin, our satiety hormone, signals our brain to stop eating when we’ve had enough food. Therefore, leptin sensitivity is vital for healthy weight management. 

Balancing and optimizing hormones is vital to reduce the risk of obesity and other metabolic conditions. Hormonal intelligence is valuable in achieving optimal health. 

Hormone replacement therapy for older adults and growth hormone optimization are practical solutions to balance and optimize hormones.

Calories are also essential for weight gain or loss, but hormonal balance and optimization are equally crucial. I cover calories in the next section. 

2 — Fix caloric imbalance.

Managing calorie balance is critical, as consuming excessive calories without burning them in time can result in the body converting the excess calories into fat molecules. 

Fat molecules are then stored in fat cells, leading to abdominal growth, especially when the calories come from refined carbs or unhealthy fats. This visceral fat accumulation can increase the risk of metabolic disorders.

From my experience, there are two options to address this. First, we should consume the right amount of calories that our metabolic rate can handle. Second, we can burn excess calories by moving regularly and initiating thermogenesis (cold and heat exposure).

Eating whole foods, avoiding junk foods with empty calories, reducing refined carbs, and replacing them with complex carbs, bioavailable proteins, and healthy fats might maintain a balanced calorie intake.

You may also try intermittent fasting (time-restricted eating) or fast-mimicking diets. These regimens work because you consume food within a specific window to enable the body to tap into fat stores during the fasting period. Time-restricted eating can make the body insulin-sensitive and fat-adapted. 

3 — Address oxidative stress and chronic inflammation.

Oxidative stress and chronic inflammation can have a detrimental impact on our metabolism, resulting in the accumulation of visceral fat and potentially leading to metabolic, endocrine, and neurological disorders if left unaddressed. 

Oxidative stress can adversely affect the body at the cellular and genetic levels leading to choric inflammation. You might check this article about cellular repairs fixing issues caused by stress and inflammation. 

I have previously written about oxidative stress and documented my experience with chronic inflammation in an article titled “How I Defeated Chronic Inflammation via 9 Lifestyle Habits.” Therefore, I will not delve into them here.

In essence, You must find practical ways to reduce stress and inflammation. Restorative sleep is crucial for addressing stress and inflammation, while proper nutrition, regular exercise, and timely recovery are also essential. 

You can reduce stress and inflammation by avoiding foods that stress the digestive system, abstaining from toxins and pathogens, regularly moving the body, and taking time to rest and recover. Slowing down and resting is critical to preventing chronic stress and inflammation.

Additionally, entering ketosis and leveraging the power of thermogenesis can help lower oxidative stress and chronic inflammation. Here is how Ketosis Can Lower Chronic Inflammation and Improve Metabolic and Mental Health in 6 Ways.

We need to address sleep deprivation timely. Lack of restorative sleep cause might cause many health issues. Sleep serves as a restoration mechanism for the body and mind. It affects hormones and neurotransmitters. 

Two hormones play a critical role in sleep quality and deprivation. They are cortisol and melatonin. Within the context of this article, elevated cortisol and insulin resistance are two crucial risk factors induced by sleep deprivation. 

Sleep requirements differ from person to person. However, we all need adequate and restorative sleep each night. We need sufficient rem, deep, and light sleep as they play different roles for the body and mind.

You must create sleep hygiene and stick to your routine to get adequate and restorative sleep daily. Besides, taking breaks at work and resting the body might reduce stress and improve sleep quality.

If sleep problems persist and affect your life, you must obtain support from qualified healthcare professionals. Family physicians might refer to sleep specialists or therapists. Here is my experience in solving sleep issues. 

4 — Abstain from a sedentary lifestyle.

Regular exercise is essential for a healthy life as it benefits the body beyond burning calories. One of the most important benefits of exercise is maintaining homeostasis, which is necessary for optimal health.

Exercise is also a potent contributor to making the body insulin sensitive, which is vital for patients with type 2 diabetes.

Movement is necessary for the body every day for several reasons. First, regular exercise helps maintain healthy blood flow and oxygenates cells, tissues, organs, and systems. 

Exercise also activates the lymphatic system, crucial in detoxifying the body. A lack of physical activity in our daily lives can lead to an imbalance of hormones, which can cause health issues in the long run.

For everyone except those who are unable to move due to underlying health conditions, regular exercise is essential. One hundred fifty minutes of weekly exercise can lower the risks of metabolic disorders, including cancers.

Like sleep and nutrition, the amount and intensity of the workout may vary from person to person, but it is vital to make exercise a habit and a routine by choosing enjoyable activities. 

Treating workouts as hobbies can be helpful, and using daily chores as an opportunity for practice is also a good option. 

However, it is crucial to avoid excessive exercise as it can cause muscle loss due to the hormonal effects of cortisol. Therefore, it is essential to exercise within your capacity and capability and maintain moderation. 

5 —Eliminate internal and environmental toxins and pathogens.

Toxins and pathogens can harm your metabolism and overall health. When exposed to these harmful substances, your body stores them in fat cells as a survival mechanism. 

Unfortunately, the more fat you accumulate, the more toxins you reserve, which can increase inflammation and disrupt the body’s delicate balance, leading to metabolic problems.

Fortunately, there are several solutions to address toxins and pathogens in our environment. One effective way is to maintain good hygiene practices in your home and workplace. Another practical solution is strengthening your defense system, protecting your body from harmful substances.

Additionally, the gut and lymphatic systems play crucial roles in your defense system, and activating the lymphatic system can eliminate toxins and pathogens from the body.

To activate the lymphatic system, various lifestyle habits can be adopted. For example, trampolining, calisthenics, cold showers, and dry saunas can be beneficial. 

Furthermore, improving our digestive system by implementing time-restricted eating and long-term fasting can clean the gut, enhance your immune system’s function, and initiate autophagy and mitophagy.

6— Solve psychological and emotional issues.

Psychological issues and emotional traumas can also adversely impact your metabolic and mental health, leading to fat gain, muscle loss, and other metabolic concerns. Negative emotions such as guilt, anger, anxiety, grief, and feeling worthless can disturb the body’s balance.

Mental problems and emotional traumas can stress the body at a genetic level, causing an imbalance in hormones and neurotransmitters. Unresolved childhood traumas can lead to addictions, such as binge eating, resulting in fat accumulation and sedentary lifestyles.

A viable solution to these issues is seeking help from qualified psychotherapists who can effectively and sustainably help you resolve your psychological problems and emotional traumas. 

If that’s not possible, self-therapy using mindfulness techniques like meditation, visualization, journaling, expressive writing, self-talk, and cognitive-behavioral therapy can be beneficial. You might try digital therapeutics like MoodGYM

Emotions are critical as they inform you of important messages from the inner world caused by biochemical and electrical signals. However, if you cannot regulate your emotions, they can cause chronic stress manifesting as physical and mental health conditions putting you in a vulnerable position.

To regulate your emotions, you must understand and accept them. Then you need to make physiological shifts such as breathing exercises, stretching, short breaks, music, laughter, and smiles to activate the parasympathetic nervous system. 

In addition to empathy and compassion for others, self-love and self-compassion are critical for regulating emotions. Furthermore, creating an emotional self-defense plan can be invaluable.

Rewiring the brain for helpful habits is necessary to prevent weight gain and obesity. You can rewire the brain using various lifestyle habits via neuroplasticity, the brain’s natural capability to change and adapt. 

Intense exercise and time-restricted eating can stimulate neurogenesis, creating more (BDNF). Here are the ten practical tips to keep the brain young and healthy.

Summary and Conclusions

Losing fat and maintaining muscle requires a holistic approach that addresses various factors beyond just diet and exercise. 

While eating less and exercising more can help in the short term, it may lead to muscle loss and fat gain in the long run. 

To achieve sustainable weight loss, you must focus on consuming nutrient-dense food, managing stress and inflammation, and balancing your hormones. Reducing oxidative stress and chronic inflammation is critical.

Customizing your solutions is essential since what works for one person may not work for another. However, principles such as hormonal balance, avoiding toxins, regular exercise, and stress management applies to everyone.

You need to be proactive in lowering risks, preventing conditions, and seeking treatment for metabolic disorders. An integrative approach is necessary for sustainable results.

In complex situations, seeking guidance from qualified healthcare professionals is necessary. For example, personalized medication or surgery may be required for severe fat accumulation.

Obesity is preventable and treatable with lifestyle changes. However, for complex hormonal and genetic issues, healthcare professionals have viable treatment solutions. It is essential to accept your situation and seek help from qualified professionals to maintain your health.


1 — Optimize hormones with healthy lifestyle choices and seeking advice from professionals.

2 — Consume adequate calories and timely burn excessive ones.

3 — Eat nutrient-dense food and refrain from empty calories.

4 — Move the body regularly and joyfully and follow an workout regimen. 

5 — Get restorative sleep every night, and lower your stress with rest, fun, timely recovery, and mindfulness practices. 

6 — Adress chronic inflammation and refrain from toxic materials and pathogens. 

7 — Try time-restricted eating or fasting to initiate autophagy and mitophagy.

8 — Act minfully, improve your relationships and solve emotional problems via guided or self-therapy.

Thank you for reading my perspectives. I wish you a healthy and happy life.

As a new reader, you might check my holistic health and well-being stories reflecting on my reviews, observations, and decades of sensible experiments optimizing my hormones and neurotransmitters. I write about health as it matters. I believe health is all about homeostasis.

Metabolic Syndrome, Type II Diabetes, Fatty Liver Disease, Heart Disease, Strokes, Obesity, Liver Cancer, Autoimmune Disorders, Homocysteine, Lungs Health, Pancreas Health, Kidneys Health, NCDs, Infectious Diseases, Brain Health, Dementia, Depression, Brain Atrophy, Neonatal Disorders, Skin Health, Dental Health, Bone Health, Leaky Gut, Leaky Brain, Brain Fog, Chronic Inflammation, Insulin Resistance, Elevated Cortisol, Leptin Resistance, Anabolic Resistance, Cholesterol, High Triglycerides, Metabolic Disorders, Gastrointestinal Disorders, Thyroid Disorders, and Major Diseases.

I also wrote about valuable nutrients. Here are the links for easy access:

Lutein/Zeaxanthin,Phosphatidylserine, Boron, Urolithin, taurine, citrulline malate, biotin, lithium orotate, alpha-lipoic acid, n-acetyl-cysteine, acetyl-l-carnitine, CoQ10, PQQ, NADH, TMG, creatine, choline, digestive enzymes, magnesium, zinc, hydrolyzed collagen, nootropics, pure nicotine, activated charcoal, Vitamin B12, Vitamin B1, Vitamin D, Vitamin K2, Omega-3 Fatty Acids, N-Acetyl L-Tyrosine, and other nutrients.

Disclaimer: My posts do not include professional or health advice. I only document my reviews, observations, experience, and perspectives to provide information and create awareness.

I publish my lifestyle, health, and well-being stories on EUPHORIA. My focus is on cellular, mitochondrial, metabolic, and mental health. Here is my collection of Insightful Life Lessons from Personal Stories.

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