Have you ever sat overheating through a social function or business meeting in a long sleeve top because you’re embarrassed by your upper arms?

Bingo wings, dinner lady arms, squirrel wings… whatever you call them, saggy skin underneath your upper arms can be a real problem area for women. The skin does start to lose its elasticity as part of the aging process but often it’s hormone imbalance that’s at the root of the problem.

If you’re battling bingo wings, chances are your insulin levels are out of whack.

The main job of insulin is to regulate your blood sugar levels. Insulin takes sugar out of your blood stream and stores it as glycogen in your muscle and liver cells to carry out growth, movement and repair jobs. Once the muscle and liver cells are full, insulin will take any remaining sugar and store it in your fat cells. But it’s not just stored there, insulin locks it in and hides the key so it’s nearly impossible for your body to access that fat and use it as energy

The key areas insulin deposits fat are under your arms, on your back and also around your waist. It’s very hard to lose weight from these areas if your hormone imbalance isn’t corrected. Insulin is also responsible for those mid afternoon energy slumps and the sugary food cravings that go with them.

The good news is that by eating smart and exercising in the right way you can rebalance your hormones and transform your body from a fat storing to a fat burning machine!

How to balance your insulin levels and blast away those bingo wings:

  • Reduce the amount of carbohydrates, processed foods and sweets you eat as their high sugar content will result in more insulin being released.
  • Sugar is hidden in all kinds of foods you don’t expect especially so called healthy cereal bars. Read food labels and if the sugar content is over 4g per 100g don’t eat it!
  • Eat lots of protein which keeps you fuller for much longer than carbohydrates. Good sources include fish, eggs and lean meats.
  • Don’t be afraid of fat. Your brain is 60% fat and needs it to function. Good fats include butter, avocado, nuts and dark chocolate.
  • Use high intensity interval training (HIIT) to balance your hormones and promote an overall fat burning environment within the body.
  • Sprinkle some light resistance exercises into your HIIT circuits to directly target your triceps, the muscle group at the back of your upper arms. Press ups are excellent for the arms and there’s a variation to suit all levels of fitness.

So don’t spend the summer overheating in long sleeved tops, jackets or cardigans. Make some small adjustments now to your eating habits and exercise routine and you can enjoy a summer of strappy tops.