Did you know that there are different kinds of fat? And did you know that one type of fat is harder on your body than any other kind of fat. Visceral fat is known to be the worst kind of fat to carry around. Let’s look at how to stay fit by losing the most dangerous fat in your body.
What is the easiest fat to lose, you may ask. “No fat is ever easy to lose,” would be my quick reply. You know the expression, “Once it parts the lips, forever it is on the hips!” But seriously, what is the easiest fat to lose?
Did you know that you cannot target only one area of the body to lose weight? Genetics plays a big factor in where we gain and lose weight first. It does, however, take diet and exercise to lose weight wherever it is on our body.
Depending where the fat is located on your body, is related to how dangerous it is to your health. The Danger Zone is fat in the abdominal region. Visceral fat is the dangerous kind of fat that surrounds your organs.
Visceral Fat is not Pinchable.
Subcutaneous fat is pinchable. It lies between skin and muscle. It keeps you warm, protects you, and stores extra calories.
Visceral fat stores calories as well, but it is not pinchable because it is located around your organs. Hidden deep within the belly, it is firm rather than squishy.
What Organs are Affected by Visceral Fat?
Fat is more than storage of calories. It is living tissue which produces and releases hormones that affect your other organs. Visceral fat is near your organs such as the pancreas, liver, heart, kidneys, and intestines which is why it can adversely affect them.
What are the Risks of Visceral Fat?
Visceral fat is one culprit for higher LDL (lousy) cholesterol. It can cause blood pressure to rise, and may make your body less sensitive to insulin, which will increase the risk of Type 2 Diabetes.
How to Stay Fit by Losing the Most Dangerous Fat
Thin or Fat
Even leaner people can have dangerously high levels of visceral fat. You can be thin and still have visceral fat around your organs. Only an expensive CT scan can really tell them apart.
Apples and Pears
You have probably heard of the different body types. Two of them being apple and pear shapes. These examples reference where the fat is stored in your body.
If your body type is an apple the fat tends to be stored in the upper chest and belly region as visceral fat.
If the body shape is a pear, the fat tends to be stored in the hips, buttocks, and thighs as subcutaneous fat. This is not a scientific explanation, just one for your quick reference.
Another way to estimate visceral fat is to measure your waist circumference. Feel the top of your hip bone, it is at the same level as your belly button. Place a tape measure around your waist at this level.
Relax, don’t suck in your belly. Measure three times and average the measurement. Be Honest! Men should have a waist circumference of less than 40 inches (102 cm) and women should have a waist circumference of less than 35 inches (89 cm)
The Waist-to Hip ratio takes the circumference of your waist and divides it by the circumference of your hips. To measure your hips, measure at the widest part.
Circumference of Waist divided by Hips. Men should have a WHR of less than 1. Women should have a WHR of less than 0.8.
Health Considerations and Visceral Fat
- Insulin Resistance
- Heart Disease
- Non-alcoholic fatty liver
- Family Health History
Chronic disease and obesity are a complex issue. It is a conversation you should have with your health care provider.
How to Stay Fit by Losing the Most Dangerous Fat
Don’t despair. Visceral fat is usually the easiest to burn because of how close it is to your liver. Subcutaneous fat is less risky, and it is harder to burn.
You can’t exercise to spot reduce excess fat. A healthy diet and lifestyle are what works the best.
Concentrate on whole grains, fresh fruits, vegetables, and lean protein. Cut back on added sugars and unhealthy tropical fats, like palm oil.
Eat a healthy diet and exercise. Sweat for 30 to 60 minutes each day! Endurance exercise, done on a regular basis, is the best way to get visceral fat to disappear. Running, biking, swimming, and rowing elevate your heart rate.
How do You Reduce Visceral Fat?
Some doctors recommend that you try to reduce your stress levels. Relaxation techniques such as deep breathing, and other stress management tactics, can be beneficial for people with high levels of belly fat, or visceral fat.
Visceral Fat and Stress
Stress causes your levels of cortisol to rise. High levels of cortisol cause you to store more visceral fat. And you guessed it! Visceral fat can appear as belly fat!
To remedy weight gain, it helps to get good quality sleep and try not to stress over things. If you are in a pleasant frame of mind, taking care of yourself is much easier.
5 Tips to Get You on Track
Be Gentle with Yourself.
Don’t put yourself on a guilt trip if you have gained weight or want to lose weight and it is not happening. Be gentle with yourself. Make a plan and decide how to make it work.
Don’t put it off for another day. Begin today. Go out and buy food for a healthy supper tonight, and a healthy breakfast in the morning.
Make a Meal Plan That You Enjoy.
There are plenty of healthy foods available. Plan meals that you enjoy. Stock your kitchen with foods that you and your family like and make fitness a family affair.
If the necessary ingredients are already in the kitchen, it makes it so much easier to eat well.
Reach Out for Support.
Let friends and family assist you in your fitness goals. Perhaps you can all work at it together. That makes it so much easier if it is one for all and all for one. Having a common goal helps you succeed.
Get Professional Help.
You may have the best of intentions, but sometimes you hit a snag. Find someone to hold you accountable to your weight loss goals.
There are non-profit weight-loss groups available like TOPS. Being together each week and being held accountable for how the week has gone has been a tremendous help for me.
Some may find that a personal trainer, nutritionist, or medical doctor is a necessity for them in order to achieve their goals.
It is not always about the numbers on the scale.
The goals are not always related to the scale. Some people realize that they are just out of shape. Perhaps their goal is to prepare for a marathon, or just be able to take their grand kids to the zoo.
Some people find that their initial goal is just to get up from the sofa. With determination they eventually find they can walk three to five miles a day.
Some want to fit into that favorite pair of jeans or take the dog for a run.
The most dangerous fat is hidden deep inside, surrounding your organs. It is the firm, un-pinchable kind. Having a healthy diet and a good exercise plan can help you attain your goals.
What ever your goal is, make it a priority to become a healthier, happier you.
Please Leave a Comment
I would love to hear from you. What are your plans to keep visceral fat away?
Disclaimer: I am not a doctor. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional. No content on this site should be substituted for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified healthcare practitioner. The information contained here is for informational purposes only. It is from my research and personal experience.