What is a pooch belly?
A pooch belly is where the belly protrudes outward even though you are not overweight. This is common in women, but also occurs in men too.
What causes pooch belly?
According to David Grissafi, author of Firm & Flatten Your Abs:
Pooch belly is caused by neurological problems. Basically, the “wiring” of your lower abdominal muscles is inhibited, allowing the muscles to relax and bulge out.
This can be a result of:
- food intolerances,
- food allergies, and
- visceroptosis, ie compression and displacement of internal organs.
How to get rid of belly pooch
Assuming that you don’t have excess belly fat, here are 2 tips on how to get rid belly pooch:
1. Food allergies and intolerances
Many people are unaware that they are intolerant to gluten in wheat (and other grains) and/or dairy. Food intolerances or allergies can cause inflammation, gas and bloating in lower intestines that result in pooch belly appearance.
Here’s how to test if you are intolerant to wheat and/or dairy. Eliminate wheat and dairy products from your diet for 2 weeks. See how you feel and look. You may notice some positive changes that include losing belly pooch, losing body fat, resolving certain health issues (diabetes, chronic headaches, eczema, skin allergies, etc) and improved energy levels.
After the 2 weeks, reintroduce them one at a time to find out whether you are intolerant to one or both of them.
Most foods such as bread, cereal, crackers, cake, etc contain gluten from wheat or other grains (oats, barley, rye). It may not be possible to eliminate them completely from your diet. However, you may want to reduce its consumption as the first step to losing your belly pooch or a better health. Alternatively, choose gluten free food products where available.
2. Core exercises
Muscles that have been cut as a result of surgeries such as hysterectomies, c-sections and hernias tend to lack communication with the nervous system, thus causing a pooch belly. Performing certain exercises can help to re-establish this communication, tighten core muscles and help you get rid belly pooch.
Check out some of the recommended core exercises by David Grissafi here:
He also wrote a great article on why pooch belly occurs and what to do about it here: