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Question
Posted by: R | 2010/09/06

Trimming tummy

Hi Doc,
My husband is 51 and generally very healthy. He is very active and exercises when time permits. The problem is lately he''s developed a pot-belly and it seems to be getting worse. To me this is just unhealthy, although I generally cook healthy foods. He does not over-eat. I notice we do consume more potatoes than any other vegetable, and this is coupled with rice and meat. Currently, we have a weekly supply of fresh fruit juice, of which he has about 1/2 I per day. He will have 2-4 sandwiches for lunch, and then supper.
He has the occasional beer, 3 at most, and on weekends other liquor, but not excessive.
What healthy foods would be suitable to help him trim down, without calling it ''diet''? What would help remedy this?
Many thanks.

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageDietDoc

Dear R
It is unfortunately a fact that people do tend to develop abdominal obesity as they grow older. If you hubby could stick to doing his regular exercise this would already help to mobilise the fat that is accumulating on his tummy. Doing sit-ups also helps. If he is ingesting more energy than he is using up per day, then the extra energy is stored as fat. I don't think it is the potatoes as such that cause the weight gain, but possibly margarine or butter or mayonnaise that is added to the potatoes? By cutting down on fat intake you save 37 kJ per gram! By cutting down on alcohol you can save 29 kJ per ml. Check out the energy-reduced, low-fat, high-fibre diet on this Website(click on 'Diet' at the top of this page, 'Weight loss', ‘Balanced diet’ and then on 'Slimming Diet' for a copy of such a diet) and compare it to your hubby's current food intake and make subtle changes. Also encourage him to become more active once again. The fruit juice he drinks also can contribute to increased energy intake (average kJ content is 210 kJ/100 ml, thus 5 x 210 = 1050 kJ per day extra via the fruit juice), and it may be a good idea to replace it with soda water or to at least dilute it 50% with water. Research has shown that liquid sugars (an fruit juice contains a lot of sugar like fructose) is inclined to promote weight gain more than solid sugar.
I hope you will be able to help your hubby lose his pot-belly.
Best regards
DietDoc

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Our users say:
Posted by: DietDoc | 2010/09/06

Dear R
It is unfortunately a fact that people do tend to develop abdominal obesity as they grow older. If you hubby could stick to doing his regular exercise this would already help to mobilise the fat that is accumulating on his tummy. Doing sit-ups also helps. If he is ingesting more energy than he is using up per day, then the extra energy is stored as fat. I don't think it is the potatoes as such that cause the weight gain, but possibly margarine or butter or mayonnaise that is added to the potatoes? By cutting down on fat intake you save 37 kJ per gram! By cutting down on alcohol you can save 29 kJ per ml. Check out the energy-reduced, low-fat, high-fibre diet on this Website(click on 'Diet' at the top of this page, 'Weight loss', ‘Balanced diet’ and then on 'Slimming Diet' for a copy of such a diet) and compare it to your hubby's current food intake and make subtle changes. Also encourage him to become more active once again. The fruit juice he drinks also can contribute to increased energy intake (average kJ content is 210 kJ/100 ml, thus 5 x 210 = 1050 kJ per day extra via the fruit juice), and it may be a good idea to replace it with soda water or to at least dilute it 50% with water. Research has shown that liquid sugars (an fruit juice contains a lot of sugar like fructose) is inclined to promote weight gain more than solid sugar.
I hope you will be able to help your hubby lose his pot-belly.
Best regards
DietDoc

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