Do you have a protruding belly and a large waist? Then that’s a clear sign you are storing dangerous Visceral Fat. This is excess body fat that is stored within the abdominal cavity. It’s also known as “deep” fat that is stored further underneath the skin.
How is Visceral Fat caused
People who consume large amount of calories and do little or no physical activity are likely to have high visceral fat stores. Consumption of too many calories, foods rich in refined, processed carbs and sugary items leads to too much glucose in the blood stream. This triggers pancreas to release large amount of insulin. The longer time blood insulin levels remain high, the more likely a person accumulates excess visceral fat.
Health effects due to high Visceral Fat
- High Inflammation-Inflammation is the root cause of most disease. High visceral fat produces a lot of hormonal and inflammatory molecules. Also it becomes inflamed by itself by producing interleukin-6, a type of inflammatory molecule which leads to many autoimmune reactions.
- High risk for Diabetes-High visceral fat leads to insulin resistance which in turn increases the risk of developing diabetes.
- High risk for Heart disease and Stoke-High volumes of fat leads to generation of inflammatory cytokines which is the main contributor for heart disease. Visceral fat is associated with an increased risk for high triglycerides, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.
- High risk for developing Depression and Mood swings-Excess visceral fat leads to hormonal changes like serotonin, galanin and other brain neurotransmitters, which can negatively impact your mood.
- High risk for developing Arthritis- The visceral fat itself in active tissue creates and releases chemicals, which promote inflammation. These chemicals can influence the development of arthritis.
- Sleep disorders-Sleep apnea occur when muscles at the back of the throat close, blocking the upper airway and causing an interruption to normal breathing. This fat influences the blocking, resulting in disturbed sleep.
Change your eating habits
- Reduce sugar and refined carbohydrate foods like-Refines carbs like bread, rice, pasta, crackers, sweets and sugary beverages when avoided reduces visceral fat.
- Increase fiber consumption-Include fruits and vegetables which are high in fiber like apples, berries, berries and pears, beans, spinach, broccoli and cabbage. Fibre helps eliminate fat and lower cholesterol.
- Avoid fatty foods like-Fried food, bakery products, red meat, oily and greasy foods have to be avoided. These foods contain trans fats. Trans fats increase visceral fat and cholesterol.
- Consume good fats: Essential fat from sources like avocados, nuts and seeds, olive oil, canola oil, peanut oil and sesame oil are beneficial. Good fats help lower bad cholesterol and helps shed excess fat.
- Engage in cardio exercises-Cardio exercise for around 2.5 hrs a week has shown significant results in lowering visceral fat. Aerobic activities that can also be included are-walking, jogging, swimming, biking or hiking.
- Engage in strength training exercise- By including one to two days of strength training each week helps reduce visceral fat. Strength training includes activities like-weight lifting, pilates or isometric exercises like push-ups or crunches.
- Engage in different types of exercise or activities-If exercising in a gym is not happening, try a dance class or some outdoor activities like walking, hiking, kayaking or biking. As a result of this activity your health will improve.
- Studies have shown that those who slept for less than six hours had higher levels of visceral fat. It’s recommended to sleep at least for seven to nine hours each night for better metabolism and reduction in overall fat%.
- Both smoking and drinking alcohol have been linked to higher amounts of visceral fat. Avoiding both will help reduce visceral fat, decrease weight and improve overall health.
- Especially relevant is Stress. Stress triggers cortisol production and interferes with appetite control, sleep and cravings which in turn leads to high visceral fat accumulation. Try stress reducing techniques like yoga, meditation, exercise.
Therefore, choose healthier lifestyle options. They will not only decrease your overall fat but will improve overall quality of life. Contact our Experts at BucketList Dreams to get rid of excess fat with a sustainable lifestyle modification.