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The flabby stomach overhang known as "the mother's apron"

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My family has a genetic predisposition to the "mother's apron". No matter how skinny or how small, if you've had kids or not, all the women in the family have this unnatural amount of flesh hanging from the lower abdomen. I am curious to know if anyone here has had any success in reducing this nasty appendage without having a tummy tuck, and how did you do it? This is how bad mine is....I tried on pants at the mall yesterday. Even though I have lost 3 pants sizes in my hips, legs, butt, and waist, I have to wear 2 sizes too big just to fit the gut. Not a pretty picture.
Edited Mar 25 2007 08:11 by united2gether
Reason: moved to new Health & Support forum :)
58 Replies (last)
How frustrating! Someone answered a question of mine about omega-3 fats with the comment that consumption of these fats (found in almonds, fish, etc...) help with tummy fat. You may want to look into this. I think it has something to do with the hormone cortisol as well. Good luck with your research!
Congratulations on losing 3 sizes!!!!  My family has the apron too! lol  A doctor told my cousin that she has to workout everyday switching between cardio and weights and do daily sit ups... If that doesn't help, I don't know.. I haven't even began the exercise phase yet.. just trying to loose some weight.  I'm taking Omega-3 pills.... I haven't seen it make my belly fat softer but I hear it's great for the heart! Good luck and hang in there... No pun intended! :o (I'm kidding)

For the vast majority of women, this 'belly flap' (better known as 'mothers apron') is stored fat from the pregnancy. It is very stubborn and difficult to get rid of. Most women are unable, unwilling or unprepared to commit to the exercise and diet routine needed to blast the fat. But for those women who are willing and able to take the challenge, lean abs are possible.

I have worked with many clients who have had a c-section and now have fabulous abs. Unless there was muscle damage, this should not be an issue. However -- sorry, there is a however to consider -- for women who have more elastic skin and/or gained an excessive amount of weight, there is the issue of extra (stretched) skin. No matter how much you fight the fat, loose skin may still be a problem. The only way to rid yourself of this is cosmetic surgery. Again, this is less often the case. The vast majority of 'belly flaps' are fat that can be sculpted.
I call mine belly hang -- and when I lost a lot of weight in the early 80s, the belly hang diminished in size, but I wasn't able to get rid of it.  It was still quite noticeable if I wore light colored pants or skirts.

what is the diet and exercise routine suggested? 
That was me that made the comment about omega 3's and belly fat...BUT I was actually referring to belly fat at the belly button - the hard stuff that's deep within your abdomen under the muscle, not lower belly fat, which flaps around and lies on top of the muscle... they are actually two different things... although you could have both.. one you can pinch the other you can't so easily.

After my pregnancies I also had the mother's apron, that lower belly bulge... it was gross... and yes, even after losing weight and getting to pre-pregnancy size, it was still there and making me have to wear a bigger size pants.

Back then, I committed to weight training and over time it disappeared as I reduced my overall body fat %.. but not completely. You could feel rock-hard abs underneath, but there was this layer of squishy loose wrinkly skin on top.

It's 12 years since my last pregnancy, and about 16 years since my all-time highest weight, and it's still the same, in fact, I still have red stretchmarks.. they never turned white. I will always have the loose skin from stretched out pregnancy and previous weight gain, unless I want a tummy tuck. I'm probably a great candidate for one, actually!!  But strength training can and does make a big difference in time.

With this last 25 lb weight gain, it did come back again, but not nearly as bad, and I am happy to say it was one of the first spots to reduce.... and yoga makes me stand taller and look better there too. Nope, the lower belly today is better than the fat AT the belly... sigh.

Also, I believe I've read that some women can tear the vertical muscle in their lower abdomen during pregnancy, and this can cause the fat to bulge funny forever more... ??
I had it.  The dr said " Just genetics, nothing you can do about it" 

His mistake!  never tell me I cant do anything about it!  you can!!!  I am a believer in the Firming creams and Abdominal workouts.  They take time but if you devote time to them and stick with it you can and will knock it off some.  Im not saying it will disappear but it will look a LOT better.  mine is almost gone but I know I will always have that one little line that insist on creasing over but my son doesnt ask "whats that?" anymore. :)

I have lost 6inches from my waist and still have more to lose but I know I will.

Have faith gals!!!
wow, thanks slappy!

*slaps slappy a hi 5!!!* LOL

I've got a mommy apron too.  Two emergency c-sections, 20mos apart.  Major scar ledge for any extra "stuff" to just spill over :P

It is going down tho, so I'm hopeful it'll just keep getting smaller and smaller.  I tell myself everytime I see it in the mirror (or almost zip it in my pants ugh) that it is an Honored Badge Of Motherhood.

2 babies, natural, 20 months apart.

1st was 9lbs 2oz

2nd was 9lbs 15oz

I don't think there's anything NATURAL about pushing a 9lb baby (size of small watermelon) out something the size of a small lemon!

:D LOL!!!!!
so true!!!

Im at my Before having kids weight now but that stomach hates us so we have to work extra hard!

If you guys are interested...... go to the fitness forum and join our March on to greater abs group! /1/26669.html
Great post jennmcc!!!  I have both the fats. Hard belly fat and an apron from c-section. I think I might have muscle damage because there are some parts of the scar that I can't feel.. totally numb. And my pregnancy was 9 years ago.

This is really motivating me to get off my butt and work at it though! I've been comfortable for tooooooooo long!
Hey all, late in joining the discussion but I have the exact same thing.  I am giving it a year of working on diet and exercise and if it doesn't go down then I will look into surgery.  My son was just under 10lbs when he was born and like Jennifer said I have parts of my skin that doesn't have any feeling in it.  Until then, I am committed to getting it to go away :).
Hey--slappy--good to know you were able to lose it.  I have clothes are probably one size larger than I need to wear.  Yuck, yuck, yuck.  I have 3....a nine year old (got my weight down after issues), then a 20 month old and an 8 month yeah, only 3 months off of being pregnant, and I was HUGE with the third one.  Ah the term mother's apron.  Had never heard it before.  Here's hoping it goes away with work!  :)
I have a nasty hysterectomy scar that the fat seems to hover over.  I have noticed that my tummy is going down and I think my 30 minutes on the elliptical each day has been helping.
There is a good article over at in the fitness section titled  "Walk off belly fat" everyone should read.
I do not want to ruin my reputation here, but a little belly on a woman drives me crazy (in a good way)!
Jen Pen - I know what you mean. It's been 16 years since my first c-section and I never regained any feeling.

I've had 2 by C -- the oldest is 16, she was a 10lber and my youngest is 6, he was almost 9 lbs.

Thanks for all the comments/encouragement/advice! I'm totally giggling right now knowing that others deal with this too. Here's a funny story for those who "get it"--

My sister and I both have this terrible overhang. She's maybe 150 lbs and probably 50 of it is just her gut. She is super skinny everywhere else so she looks like an olive on a toothpick. When I was that skinny, mean kids in school would call me "two butt" because the front was bigger than the back. (we both have NO BUTT!)

So, my sister an I, after 30 years of living with this have begun telling people that we have a birth defect and that our butts were put on backwards. We're in the process of deciding what color our "ribbon" should be to raise awareness for "backwards butt syndrome". I'm thinking silver and pink...the color of stretchmarks.
Girls, do all that you can while you're young to deal with that fold of fat....The longer the skin is stretched over it, the harder it is to lose....I've had 3 kids and don't have any stretch marks but the skin is still stretched and sags over my lower abs/groin area...Even at a low wgt of 127 at age 51, the skin tucked under...Now at 55 and still 38 lbs overwgt, it has become more than just a tuck of stretched out there's something under the skin...fat!  Fortunately I don't carry much of my wgt in my stomach/abs or it would be even worse....

I hate it when old people want other's to learn from their mistakes but please, take my warning!  Get rid of the fat while you're young...They take away your metabolism when they send out your AARP card!
backwards butt!!!

LMFAO  ROFL  OMG too funny


brown ribbons is my vote!!!!!

ok raise your hands everyone who has squished their overhang from your hips towards your belly button to make a butt complete with butt hole (belly button???)

It's also known as "muffin top".  Some are bigger than others depending on how long they've been "cooking" lol (how long it's been since the last baby, the last time you've exercised and watched your calories).  It's a curse and I've got it too! It's getting smaller through ALOT of hard work and exercise and I hope to god it goes away one day. 
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