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Beer Guts: A Midlife Crisis

Flickr FBellon
Flickr FBellon

You know, back in my high school days I used to think that the only men who walked around with beer guts were old, lazy alcoholic degenerates who lived wild redneck lives and beat their wives and kids often. Now that I’m almost forty years old and I’ve lived out a wild redneck life of my own, it’s clear to me that the battle of the beer gut is just a product of reckless habits, middle age and a sluggish metabolism.

Last year I came to the conclusion that if I didn’t make some changes I was going to end up toting around a disgusting beer gut of my own. It wasn’t that it was getting that out of control, but it seemed like every time I looked in the mirror my gut was starting to stick out just a little bit more. I wanted to get a grip on the situation before it reached the point where I just accepted the gut as one of the perils of being a beer drinker and decided to live with it. The challenge here was to get my waistline under control without having to give up beer. The truth is I really like beer. I am a daily drinker and have been for a lot of years. So with my “cake and eat it” mentality my mission was to try to find a way to eliminate the beer gut without actually eliminating the culprit. I wasn’t about to give it up!

 

Flickr Tim Pearce, Los Gatos
Flickr Tim Pearce, Los Gatos

In researching the subject what I learned was that it wasn’t necessarily the beer that was causing my distended gut. The truth was that it was more likely due to my poor overall diet and high caloric intake. Sources like WebMD® reported that even though beer does contribute to weight gain it does not contribute any more than sodas, or too much food. Apparently your body does not discriminate against beer. Basically, if you consume too many calories, no matter if it’s beer or food, you’re going to put on weight.

What I was finding out made sense. I wasn’t eating breakfast in the morning to stimulate my metabolism. I was eating junk food for lunch. I was completely skipping dinner, drinking a bunch of beer, and then making a late night taco run to remedy the beer munchies. Not to mention I wasn’t getting enough exercise. No wonder I was starting to develop a little bit of a gut. In my twenties this beer and taco diet worked famously without showing any signs of retaliation. But as a man quickly approaching forty, it just wasn’t working anymore. The fact of the matter was that I was getting older, and like it or not I had to make some changes if I wanted to continue to feel good about myself.

 

Flickr callme_crochet
Flickr callme_crochet

So with this information in my arsenal, I made some changes. The biggest change was eliminating fast food and processed foods from my diet altogether. I know that’s hard for a lot of people to do but if calorie cutting is what needs to happen, what a better place to start than by getting rid of junk food. Unfortunately you cannot lose the gut without giving up a few things. In my opinion the choice between giving up fast food and giving up beer really isn’t a choice at all. Those of you hardcore beer drinkers out there will be able to appreciate that.

Personally I feel like these changes have made a huge difference in my overall appearance without me having to make many other lifestyle changes. It’s true. Other than taking the occasional walk and steering clear of fast food I didn’t do much of anything else and my stomach started to shrink. In fact, I could tell a difference in my appearance just weeks after changing my eating habits. I’ve dropped nearly 15 pounds, and I still drink a lot of beer! That part of my diet hasn’t changed at all. The only difference is rather than making late night taco runs I make tacos for dinner instead. Not every night, but at least once a week I cook tacos for dinner. I still eat most of the same types of foods that I did before. I simply quit relying on fast food chains and the frozen food department to provide those for me.

If you want to lose your beer gut I suggest doing some research of your own and try to find a regimen that works for you.

The following websites are reliable sources if Health and Diet information:

www.webmd.com

www.livestrong.com

 

 

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