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Belly Fat Linked To Early Death – How to fight it?

As women age, fat is more likely to build around the midsection, rather than the hips and thighs. Too much belly fat can increase your risk for heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Now an important new study links belly fat to early death. Researchers followed about 360,000 Europeans enrolled in one of the largest, longest health studies in the world. They found that people with the most belly fat had about double the risk of dying prematurely as people with the least amount of belly fat. Death risk increased with waist circumference, whether the participants were overweight or not.


The most important result of the study is the finding that not just being overweight, but also the distribution of body fat, affects the risk of premature death.

Since visceral fat is buried deep in your abdomen, it may seem like a difficult target for spot reduction. As it turns out, visceral fat responds well to a regular exercise routine and a healthy diet. Fortunately, there are simple ways to fight belly fat. Besides, there’s a growing body of research showing that the fastest way to burn off the fat from your belly is with a combination of weight-training and aerobic exercise.


Some evidence for this comes from a six-month study of thirty obese women. They were assigned to one of three groups: a control group, an aerobic exercise group and a combined exercise group. The aerobic group did one hour of cardiovascular exercise (60-70% maximum heart rate) six days a week. The combined exercise program involved weight training (3 days a week, Monday, Wednesday, Friday) and aerobic exercise (3 days a week, Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday).

Here’s what the combined exercise program looked like:

As you can see in the table below, the combined exercise group lost almost three times more abdominal subcutaneous fat and 13% more visceral fat than the aerobic-only group.





Abdominal subcutaneous fat

– 23.1 cm3

– 61.8 cm3

Abdominal visceral fat

– 82.6 cm3

– 93.0 cm3


Forget about doing hundreds of crunches, sit-ups, or any of the various “drawing in the belly button” exercises. They’re virtually useless for most people when it comes to losing belly fat. Remember, belly fat is stored energy. To get rid of it, you need to burn more energy (calories) than you eat.And these exercises don’t burn enough calories to make much of a difference to the appearance of your waist and stomach.


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