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Surefire Ways to Shrink Abdominal Fat

An expanding waistline is more unhealthy than you think. Most people have a little belly fat and that's normal, but when you go up a pants size or two, that's an indication you have visceral fat, which is hidden deep in your abdomen and wraps around your vital organs. It's been linked to major health issues like cancer, stroke, fatty liver, type 2 diabetes and more. Eat This, Not That! Health spoke with experts who share tips on how to get rid of belly fat and how to measure visceral fat. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.


Why Abdominal Fat Is Unhealthy

Woman sitting at the gym with pink pilates ball.

Jakob Roze, personal trainer, CSCS and founder of RozeFit, a high-end concierge personal training practice says, "Abdominal fat is unhealthy because of its adverse effect on metabolic health. The type of fat around the abdominal region is called visceral fat which is strongly associated with insulin resistance and dyslipidemia. The latter of which is the primary requisite for cardiovascular disease and the former of which is the primary requisite for type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, abdominal obesity is a high predictor of all cause mortality."


How To Measure Visceral Fat

Nutritionist inspecting a woman's waist using a meter tape

Dr. Nicholas Jones, MD, FACS Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon explains, "An easy way to tell if you have visceral fat is to suck your stomach in, if your stomach is still bulging out, you more than likely have visceral fat.  Another easy test is to measure your waist size.  If the circumference is over 35" (women) or 40" (men) you probably have a significant amount of visceral fat.  There really isn't a good way of measuring the amount of visceral fat without a imaging study (i.e. – CT scan or MRI)."  


Get More Sleep

man sleeps peacefully in comfy sheets

Lack of sleep can cause serious health issues like heart attack, diabetes, high blood pressure and more. Not getting 7-9 hours of good quality sleep at night can also cause visceral fat. Dr. Jones states, "Studies have shown that a lack of sleep increases your fat gain.  So by going to bed early and getting enough sleep can lower your visceral fat levels."


Change Your Diet

leafy greens

Dr. Jones says, "Eat cleaner and healthier.  Get rid of the sodas, sweets, and salt.  Drink plenty of water, eat green vegetables, fruit, and cut back on the late night snacks, pasta, bread, alcohol, candy, and processed foods.  By doing so, you will take in cleaner calories and your body will be less likely to store the unused calories as fat!"


Start Strength Training

woman tying sneakers at gym

According to Roze, "Strength training helps you lose body fat by increasing your lean muscle tissue. Lean muscle tissue requires a lot of energy and therefore helps you burn more calories which ultimately helps you lose fat."

Kent Probst, personal trainer, kinesiotherapist and bodybuilder with Long Healthy Life adds, "Not only will resistance training build muscle and improve your physique, other benefits of strength training include:

  • Increased walking speed
  • Improved cognitive function
  • Better balance
  • Improved stair climbing ability
  • Improved mood
  • Increased bone density
  • Improved weight management
  • Increased grip strength"

Implement Zone 2 Training

women take workout selfie in mirror

Roze shares, "Zone 2 training is a type of low intensity steady state cardio that improves the functioning of your mitochondria. When your mitochondrial function is improved, you will burn fat more efficiently as fuel and thus liberate your fat stores. Furthermore, zone 2 training improves insulin sensitivity which helps with nutrient partitioning and thus decreases the likelihood that the fat you consume from food will be stored in your fat cells. You should be able to hold a conversation throughout the duration of your cardio session. This is how you approximate zone 2. Perform for 30 minutes – 1 hour 3x per week."


Sustain a Calorie Deficit

woman choosing healthy apple instead of junk dessert as a food swap to cut calories

"Your body must burn more energy than you intake in order to lose body fat," Roze says. "Thus, you must be in a calorie deficit of approximately 500kcal per day in order to lose 1lb of fat per week. You can adjust this deficit number to meet the needs of your fat loss goals (i.e. greater deficit = faster fat loss, lesser deficit = slower fat loss)." 


Track Your Calories

person counting calories and keeping track in notepad

Roze explains, "In order to sustain a calorie deficit you will need to keep track of the energy contents of your food. Therefore, a calorie tracking app helps you log this information. These calorie tracking apps will calculate your deficit number and then allow you to input all of the food you consume throughout the day. Simply consume the amount of calories they recommend per day (your deficit number) and you will lose body fat at a predetermined rate." 

The post Surefire Ways to Shrink Abdominal Fat appeared first on Eat This Not That.

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