Ivor O’Connor

November 13, 2008

Abdominal fat is harmful

Filed under: Uncategorized — ioconnor @ 5:47 am

NPR reported on some recent studies today. You can read the article here http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=96922213

If you’ve been waiting for one more reason to finally get rid of that excess belly fat, take note. Researchers in Germany have found that fat accumulated in the abdomen can be far more dangerous to your health than fat on other parts of the body.

The results of the study, which involved nearly 360,000 participants from nine European countries, add to a long line of research that shows abdominal fat is harmful.

“In particular, deep abdominal fat is by far the most dangerous fat in terms of risk of diabetes, heart disease and stroke,” Manson says. “Most of the research studies suggest that this abdominal fat at least triples the risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension and abnormal cholesterol levels.”

“What I can tell you is that you cannot spot-reduce your belly fat. So doing more calisthenics or sit-ups can strengthen muscles in the abdominal core, but you’re not going to mobilize more fat from the belly area,” he says. “You have to go back to the old ‘tried and true’: Reduce the amount of total calories you consume, and burn off more calories over the course of a day.”

Exercise, of course, is what helps burn excess calories. Experts think you need at least 60 minutes of exercise a day to lose weight. But Manson says the good news is that “this [tummy] fat is often the first to go with weight loss, which may explain why even most weight loss of 5 to 10 percent of body weight can be very helpful in terms of improving blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol and overall improvements in metabolism.”

Tried and true method? Baloney.

Instead go run 10K under 50 minutes, preferably 40 minutes, every day. Also do a few push-ups, chin-ups, sit-ups, bar-dips, and stretches to round yourself out. You’ll never gain weight. And it won’t matter whether you eat 1,000 calories or 25,000 calories. The calories just pass on by never forming fat.

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