Love handles. Muffin tops. Spare tires. Unfortunately, a clever nickname doesn’t disguise what it really is – abdominal fat. It doesn’t change the fact that it’s incredibly stubborn, either. It’s as if abdominal fat has its own agenda, seemingly resistant to every diet and exercise you’ve tried (are you saying “amen” yet?). Rest assured – it’s not just you. There’s actually a science behind why abdominal fat refuses to give. Let’s check it out.

The Aging Process: You read that right. Mother Nature plays cruel jokes! Typically, as we age, muscle mass diminishes, while fat increases (say goodbye to 5-7 pounds of muscle mass every decade beginning around 30 – yikes). Unfortunately, the loss of muscle mass also decreases the rate in which you burn calories, which can make it a bit more challenging to lose weight. On top of that, as women age more fat is distributed in the middle belly regions (especially during and after menopause), adding to that spare tire. The combination of the loss of muscle mass, slower metabolism and fat redistribution make aging belly fat an (unfortunate) natural process.

Hormones: You can thank estrogen on this one. Estrogen levels drop as women age and move past child bearing years. This drop results in the shift of body fat, typically from your lower body to your stomach. The hormone shift experienced during menopause can also cause women to hold on to lower body fat (not by choice). High levels of cortisol might be playing a role in abdominal fat as well. Cortisol is a naturally occurring hormone in your body and in normal levels, it’s harmless. High levels of stress, however, cause an increase in cortisol. Because of high levels of cortisol, your body enacts a “fight or flight” response due to significant stress and it actually hoards fat because it senses uncertainty. Your abdomen typically has more cortisol receptors, which means the fat makes its way to your spare tire and decides to settle in.

Genetics: It’s true. Mom, Grandma, and Aunt Linda can play a role in your battle with the belly bulge. In fact, up to 50% of our predisposition to gain weight is genetic, meaning if your relatives struggled with belly bulge, you might, too. Women with an apple shape are more inclined to have abdominal fat – with less fat around the hips and thighs, and more around the waist. No offense to Grandma!

So between the normal and inevitable aging process, natural hormones and the genetic hand you’re dealt, you might be at a stalemate with those love handles or a muffin tops that just won’t give. The good news is that Dr. Capizzi and the Capizzi team are just as stubborn. That’s why we offer COOLSCULPTING®.

Here at Capizzi MD, we like to think of COOLSCULPTING® as our sure advantage in the belly flab battle. COOLSCULPTING® is a non-invasive treatment that freezes unwanted body fat. It’s simple, really. During the hour-long treatments, cooling panels are placed on your skin, targeting the unwanted fat cells underneath. It’s almost painless – you’ll feel a firm pull and a bit of pressure once the panels are in place and ready to freeze the fat. This freezing process destroys those dastardly fat cells, and your body then naturally disposes of the terminated cells over a period of time. With Dr. Capizzi’s approach – we call it the Capizzi Method for obvious reasons – you’ll see some results immediately and then even more over time, with the full effect in about 16 weeks.

Dr. Capizzi wants you to know that this FDA-cleared treatment has no down time, which makes COOLSCULPTING® perfect for even Charlotte’s busiest of women – and the men they love – too. Why not skip the power lunch at Capitol Grill and opt for COOLSCULPTING®?

Is anyone else thinking Valentine’s Day?? Give a COOLSCULPTING® gift certificate at Stillwater and get ready for the big breakup with fat!