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Is Visceral Fat Failing your Flat Belly Efforts?

Even after doing rigorous target exercises at the gym, your belly fat ceases to reduce.

Wellness
| Contributor Content| UPDATED: April 24, 2018, 12:03 PM IST
Is Visceral Fat Failing your Flat Belly Efforts? This image is for representation purpose only.
Visceral Fat is the body fat stored around organs in our abdominal cavity, like liver, pancreas, intestines, colon, etc. To put in simple language, if your body is otherwise lean but your belly still sticks out, then it’s Visceral fat that is to be blamed. The harsh reality is that this is the case for most of us. While our limbs tend to be in fine shape (if not perfect), it’s our belly fat that’s hard to tame. And at times, even after doing rigorous target exercises at the gym, our belly fat ceases to reduce.

Is Visceral Fat dangerous?

Belly fat or excess visceral fat is dangerous to your overall health. Excess Belly fat is a sign of visceral fat which makes you vulnerable to diseases like Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, insulin resistance, dyslipidemia, etc. The fat stored around your internal organs releases pro-inflammatory chemicals that are closer to the portal vein and get easily into your liver and then to the bloodstream. You must aim at getting a flat belly because it’s not just about looking good, but about avoiding the risk to your health as you age.

How is Visceral Fat different than Normal Fat?

Normal fat is called subcutaneous fat i.e. fat that is stored beneath our skin. However, visceral fat is stored around organs. While you can pinch normal fat, you cannot feel visceral fat. The subcutaneous fat is extended throughout your body, but visceral fat has specific locations especially in the abdominal cavity. Lastly, those love handles and fat that wiggles and jiggles around your arms, legs, butts, chin, and elsewhere is normal or subcutaneous fat.

How to determine if you have Excess Visceral Fat?

As per experts, if your body is otherwise in normal shape but your waistline is above 35 inches (40 inches for men), then it could be due to excess visceral fat.

How to reduce Visceral Fat for a Flat Belly?

So, now as you understand what visceral fat is and why it’s important to control, here are some ways you can reduce visceral fat and achieve a flat belly:

1. Completely cut down your trans-fat intake as this is the primary source of visceral fat.

2. Cut down on alcohol. It’s not how often you drink, it’s how much you drink that makes the matter worst. ‘Fatty liver’ is a term familiar to boozers.

3. Improve your hormone profile, especially if you are close to menopause or have low estrogen levels, you need to win over hormone imbalance to lose visceral fat.

4. Stress less as when you stress your body releases cortisol that directs fat towards the abdominal region.

5. Sleep optimally, neither too less nor too much. Try to maintain a sleep hygiene between 6 to 8 hours each night to control visceral fat.

6. A well-balanced diet is important to reduce overall fat from your body and inside the abdominal cavity. Eat high-fiber and close to nature foods that churn fat out of your system.

7. Lastly, High-Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) is specifically impactful on subcutaneous as well visceral fat. Resistance Training (weightlifting) too positively impacts not just your abs from outside by targeting subcutaneous fat but also reduces visceral fat.
First Published: April 24, 2018, 12:02 PM IST
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