What causes belly fat in females

Bulge bellies are more common in women in comparison with men. There may be several reasons behind this deformed body shape, and also it results in many complicated health issues.

In this article, you’ll get the major contributing factors that stimulate the accumulation of fat in the belly in females.

Before going in-depth, let’s have a look at classification or types of belly fat. 

Types of fat

The two basic types of belly fat are:

Subcutaneous fat is pear-shaped fat around the lower body. It can pinch as it lies under the body’s skin. It is less complicated and relatively easy to handle.

Visceral fat ( apple shape), can not be grasped as it lies under the abdominal cavity where it takes all the space between belly organs and around the liver. Visceral fat is more sophisticated as it can be a reason for many dangerous diseases.  People, even of average weight, can also be suspected to develop abdominal obesity.

Is belly fat dangerous?

As described above the visceral fat is of more concern and leads to several health problems. These include diabetes(type 2), cardiovascular disorders, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, insulin resistance, dementia, breast and colon cancer, etc. 

How do I know I’ve excess belly fat?

The first question that pops up in your mind may be the same. However, to know whether you’ve excess belly fat or not, the most convenient way is measuring the waist.

First, stand erect and fasten a measuring tape around the bare belly above the hip bone. Note, don’t pull the tape under the skin and it should be in level around the belly. Then, exhale the air out and obtain the measurements.  

The waist of 35 inches or above is a primary indication of surplus abdominal fat.

Causes of Belly Fat

There are various factors that direct the body to store extra fat in the abdominal region. The significant causes of belly fat in females are :


The age factor has a very prominent subsidy in gain of belly fat. With ageing, the body starts losing muscle mass while it accelerates the storing of fat in particular areas, including the abdominal region.

This muscle loss leads to weight gain as it slows down the rate of metabolism. Ultimately, it becomes tough to retain a perfect waist as well as weight.  

Excess Cortisol production

Cortisol or stress Hormone is produced by adrenal glands and influences the body’s response to stress.

The elevated amount of this Harmon in the body is responsible for increasing body weight and storage of fat( especially in the stomach region). 

It is mostly observed that women’s bodies with bulge bellies secret excess amounts of Cortisol during stress conditions.

Generally, In many people, stress drives overeating. Instead, these excess calories being stored as fat in the body equally, it triggers the fat to keep in the belly area.

Interestingly, women who have large waists in proportion to their hips have been found to secrete more Cortisol when stressed.

Unbalanced Diet

Significantly, diet plays a key role in maintaining body conditions, including weight and shape. People who consume improper proportions of foods are more likely to develop fat in the belly region.

High carb foods slow down the body’s metabolic rate. Unlike, a protein-rich diet boosts the metabolism and gives a sense of fullness. Therefore, the people who don’t include a considerable portion of proteins in their diet, their chances to become obese heightens. 

Sugary foods put the brakes not only on the metabolism and suppress the body’s fat-burning capacity results in rapid weight gain. 

Trans fats are very harmful to the body; it stimulates the body to gain weight. These fats cause inflammation in the body. 

These fats are formed by the addition of hydrogen to unstable unsaturated fats. Commonly, these are used in pack food. 

Moreover, it can induce insulin resistance along with other severe disorders. 

Inactive lifestyle

An inactive lifestyle is a primary reason for any weight rise. Typically, inactivity does not allow the body to utilize the consumed calories entirely, and hence; it starts depositing in the body. 

Thus this extra fats stores especially around the abdominal region and are usually hard to lose.

Genetic Factors

Some studies reveal that obesity (sometimes) may be due to some genetic factors in both males and females. It is believed that there are some specific genes which can increase the likelihood of abdominal obesity. 

However, these genes can also be influenced by other environmental factors.


Menopause is one of the most prominent factors of a large stomach in women. At puberty, women’s bodies start producing a Hormone called Estrogen which prepares them for the potential pregnancy. 

It initiates the fat storage, especially on the thighs and hip region. However, menopause occurs a year later, after the last menstrual period which results in Estrogen’s reduction.

This sudden drop of Estrogen Harmon formation directs the body to store fats in the region around the belly instead of thighs and hips. This weight is usually tough to reduce.

Some women put on more or some gain less weight depending on their body conditions, genetics, age, etc.

Alcohol consumption 

In a moderate amount, alcohol does not induce any harm; however, it’s excess consumption can lead to inflammation, damage livers and other severe health issues, including a big stomach.

Alcohol in higher quantities does not enable the body to burn out extra fats; instead, it stimulates its deposit around the stomach.

Moreover, it is a high calories drink. Therefore, these calories also start storing in the belly region.

Inadequate sleep 

Many studies associate weight gain with inadequate sleep.

Sometimes sleeping disorders become a reason for insufficient poor sleep. These disorders do not allow a person to achieve the required amount of sleep. 

A comprehensive study on women has revealed the essentials of peaceful sleep. About 68,000 women are analyzed for 16 years to get relevant results. In this, 32% we’re those who take 5 or less than 5 hours to see and are speculated to gain 15 kg more weight in comparison with those who get 7 hours of sleep at night. 


Above are the main factors which cause excess belly fat in the majority of females.

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