Scientists are constantly learning new things about the metabolism of the human body, however, an old idea of what can be the cause of obesity in some people is constantly being confirmed: defective lipolysis.
Research on obesity distinguishes between basic lipolysis, which is the constant mobilization of fat, and hormone-sensitive lipolysis, which is stimulated by hormones produced when the body needs more energy. For example, adrenaline is a powerful stimulant of lipolysis  while testosterone and estrogen are two important hormones that determine the accumulation of fat in the body. Testosterone, the basic male hormone, limits adipose tissue and makes the body more muscular. In one study, 40 men with prostate cancer underwent testosterone deprivation treatment for three months, which resulted in a 9.4% increase in body fat and a 2.7% reduction in lean mass .
Human adipose tissue is heterogeneous in its metabolic activity and this is important for its local deposits . Lipolytic adrenaline responses differ between fat cells in different areas and one reason is that adipose tissue in different parts of the body has different hormone receptors. If over time the adipose tissue loses its sensitivity to the lipolytic action of certain hormones, this can result in localized fat.
How to strengthen target fat loss
If you are a man, then you may be more interested in losing weight around your waist area. This will make it easier for you to exercise the muscles near the area and maintain your normal testosterone levels.
Exercise the fat area. Some studies have shown that you do not control where fat is lost when an energy deficit is created, this is decided by your body, so local exercise does not promote local weight loss [4, 5], but other studies have shown just the opposite. So it’s worth working hard on the muscles near the area you want to lose weight.
A study of 10 men found that more fat was lost locally, where the muscles were exercised, compared to the rest of the body. Blood flow and temperature also increased more in the training area. This study showed that adrenaline affected the lipolysis of the entire adipose tissue, but due to the increased blood flow to the adipose tissue near the exercising muscles, it delivered a larger amount to this tissue resulting in local weight loss. Another study, this time in women, also found local weight loss through exercise near the target area.
Do not give up the whole body exercise because it will help you lose visceral fat, which is equivalent to losing weight in your abdomen. One reason men have a larger waist circumference than women is that they accumulate more visceral fat which is considered particularly bad for health. Try different exercise programs and at different intensities in the muscles located near the adipose tissue you are aiming for. The concentration of adrenaline in the blood increases more when the intensity of exercise is higher.
Maintain normal testosterone levels. The distribution of adipose tissue in the human body depends on age and sex. This is partly explained by sex hormones and the way they change over the years. Testosterone and estrogen are the main reasons why men tend to have an apple-shaped body and women a pear-shaped body , although after menopause women also accumulate fat in the abdomen. In men, adequate testosterone levels are required to maintain a healthy body fat distribution. Obese men have 30% lower testosterone levels than normal-weight people.
As testosterone decreases with age, visceral fat increases and this is believed to occur because it has testosterone receptors. A good idea to mobilize and burn visceral fat is to maintain your normal testosterone levels. One way to do this is through strength training [9, 10].
Finally, it is important to sleep well and minimize your stress as high levels of cortisol – the stress hormone – suppress testosterone levels and this can mean that stress increases belly fat.
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- Changes in Body Composition during Androgen Deprivation Therapy for Prostate Cancer.
- Not All Fats Are Created Equal: Adipose vs. Ectopic Fat, Implication in Cardiometabolic Diseases.
- The Effect of Abdominal Exercise on Abdominal Fat.
- Subcutaneous Fat Alterations Resulting from an Upper-Body Resistance Training Program.
- Are Blood Flow and Lipolysis in Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue Influenced by Contractions in Adjacent Muscles in Humans?
- Effect of Combined Resistance and Endurance Exercise Training on Regional Fat Loss.
- Sex differences in human adipose tissues – the biology of pear shape.
- Physically Active Men Show Better Semen Parameters and Hormone Values Than Sedentary Men.
- Serum Testosterone, Growth Hormone, and Insulin-Like Growth factor-1 Levels, Mental Reaction Time, and Maximal Aerobic Exercise in Sedentary and Long-Term Physically Trained Elderly Males.