T Nation

Fat Storage Patterns

I tend to store the majority of my bodyfat around my glutes, followed by the iliac crest (love handles), followed by the area around my belly button. I have a few questions that I was hoping someone might be able to help me with:

  1. What, if anything, does the above indicate about my hormonal situation? I have been told that it may indicate that I have too much testosterone converting to estrogen - is this a possibility?
  2. If too much Test is converting to estrogen, what type of diet might help to counteract this? I have been told that it may indicate that I eat too many carbs.
  3. What supplements can reduce the conversion of T to E?
  4. Are there any articles in T-Mag that address this issue. I’ve tried the search engine, but to no avail.

Thanks very much for any help you can offer.


This seems to be a hot topic today. Anyone have any ideas for me?

This topic facinates me. There was a blurb a few weeks back by Charles Poliquin I think it was about just this subject. Might have to search a bit to find it. I tried to find more information but results were minimal.

Storing fat in hips, but and tris are signals of elevated levels of estrogen. Switching some of you carb intake to good fats, taking an estrogen blocker and some Yohimbe (do a search on this for spot reducing) can help.

I would love to hear more on this and any other sites or articles available.

I’ve noticed this on me also. Taking M seemed to help the problem a little. While taking M and eating maintenance I lost fat around my midsection

I posted too soon. This topic is being somewhat covered in another thread. And it wasn’t Poliquin it was Alessi.

The link is http://www.t-mag.com/nation_articles/245id.jsp

You could try some Liquidex or Arimidex at .25ED. And start a low/no carb diet with cyclical refeeds. Train with German Body Composition training and hit sprints every 5-7 days and 2 days of long distance aerobics at about 70% of your heart rate max. Other supplements you could add: Gugglesterones, ECA, NYC, r-ALA, Hot-Rox, T2, Transdermal Yohimbine HCL, Multi-vit/min (should be anyway), fish oil, Flax oil, Mag-10,

Thanks to everyone who replied. I think I should clarify a bit, though. While I seem to store a greater proportion of bodyfat around my glutes (followed by love handles and belly button), my fat is relatively well-distributed around my body.

I don’t look like Grimace. I’m not one of those people who can have ripped arms, shoulders, and abs, and yet be fat from the waist down. If my upper body’s ripped, my lower body will be very close to it.

Also, I don’t have a ton of fat to lose. I’m 6’1", 185lbs., and about 11-12%bf. What, if anything, does this information say about my hormonal situation and my optimal approach to nutrition?

Thanks again for all the help.


Hey guys, correct me if I am wrong, but I remember learning in physiology class that this type of fat storage is directly related to increased levels of cortisol produced in the body (from stress, overtraining, etc.) and not estrogen. Comments?

T Catz
this has been a “hot” topic for my lastest round of recent research…There are some real good papers out there on this issue, and of course there are a myriad of issues surrounding this very topic.

I don’t know where to begin with the information on this one, as there are so many factors that make sense once reviewed and assessed. One of the major roles being genetics in terms of the manner in which one burns out fat.

Two things I have learned thus far:

E probably plays a much smaller role in the fat situation than once thought of. If it does play a significant role, its most likely at extremes of bodyfat.

Insulin is a primarly player…the abdominal region has few insulin receptor sites, but a greater affinity for insulin’s effects than the glueto-femoral region…Ever wonder why lower ab fat is the last to go as a generality?

Leptin, which has the strongest correlation with subcutaneous body fat is a prime player…should we deplete all subcutaneous body fat, leptin would be severely comprised…as such, the resistance of some subcutaneous fat areas.

Cortisol and Insulin…they act in harmony. They are the major “fat storage” hormones…Cortisol with insulin is a real bad mix

Adrenergic receptory subtype a major player as well.

whether the fat site has direct access to the portal vein is a major player…visceral fat is metabolized through the portal vein, subcutaneous isn’t, thus visceral would come first

blood flow and innervation…no blood flow, no fat loss…speaks for itself

anyway, perhaps a further discussion of this matter is at hand. One final thing: the research is still very much undecided in this area…




Is it possible that if the Estrogen-Testosterone ratio isn’t bad, cortisol during a diet would preserve belly fat causing you to lose hip fat and ass fat?

Don it really doesn’t sound like you have anything abnormal to be worried about. This topic also fascinates me and I have definitely found the combination of cortisol/insulin to be very bad…usually happening when in a high stress period and letting the diet get a bit loose and consuming too many carbs.

Rest assurred that I have plenty of academic references on this subject. One reason I don’t cite them on my posts is due to time constraints. I hate tweaking every article in APA style. I’ll save that for my papers. Anyway, if you are still doubtful about my information, i will make a detailed references post. I can understand your caution, but rest assurred the info is very legit. I hold a high standard.

As per fat depots, I want to stress that for lower abdominal fat we are looking at two factors.
a)abundance of a2 andrenoceptors
b)increased insulin receptor affinity, not number

Estrogen plays a limited role (unless at higher levels of bodyfat; obeisity)


A note on estrogen as indicated.

It most likely plays a small role in the retention of subcutaneous body fat, particularly in males, unless one speaks of extremes.

A recent study suggested that aromatase exists in primarily the vascular bed portion of subcuatenous fat, whereas ER mRNA was indicated in the upper level, surface fat portion…it appears that the aromatase shares a paracrine relationship with the ER’s in the upper periphery of the adipose tissue.