Why “Visceral Fat” is a Problem Even for Thin People
If you’re thin, you may not realize that you could have a problem with visceral fat and that your health could be at risk.
When someone mentions belly fat, most people think of someone who has a visibly fat stomach, but it is possible to be holding excess fat in your midsection and not be aware of it.
This type of fat is called “visceral fat”, and it can cause problems for people who are obviously over weight and people who appear to be thin.
Visceral fat is fat that is found in the abdominal cavity around the intestines, heart, liver, and other vital organs.
It can be present without making your belly pooch out or appear to be carrying excess fat.
Visceral fat is sneaky fat because you can’t see it like you can subcutaneous fat, which is fat just beneath the skin, but it can put your health at risk.
If you have excess visceral fat, you have an increased risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and other metabolic problems. Visceral fat releases hormones into your body that can affect your sensitivity to insulin.
Insulin sensitivity can cause you to be tired more often, have fluctuating blood sugar levels, and it can hinder your fat loss efforts.
You will also have a greater risk of developing diabetes if you develop insulin resistance.
These same hormones can also increase your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. Because these hormones can also cause inflammation in your body, they increase your chance of certain types of cancer.
Now that you know what visceral fat is and what it can do to your body, let’s find out if you are likely to have excess amounts in your abdominal cavity and what you can do about it if you do.
To find out if you have visceral fat you will need to find out what your body fat percentage is and determine if it’s in a healthy range or not.
You can determine your body fat percentage with a caliper or by taking your measurements at home and then use an online body fat percentage calculator.
Even if you are thin you can have a high body fat percentage if you have a bad fat to muscle ratio.
This condition is known as “skinny fat” among fitness enthusiasts.
If you think you have excess visceral fat even if you are thin, there are things you can do to improve your health. You may simply need to continue your fat loss at a slow, steady rate until you lower your body fat percentage.
If you are already thin and are in danger of being underweight if you continue losing fat, you may need to make an effort to build muscle mass and improve your body fat percentage that way.
There are many good muscle building programs available if this is your problem.
You will also want to get plenty of rest and control your stress levels because stress can increase cortisol production, and cortisol will make your body store and hold onto more visceral fat.
Increasing your fiber intake and water intake can also help reduce your visceral fat. If you do these things, you will reduce your visceral fat and lower your risk of many serious health problems.
Even if you’re thin, visceral fat can be a problem for you.
It is important to check your body fat percentage and keep it in a healthy range. Visceral fat can rob you of your health, so be vigilant and do what it takes to reduce keep visceral fat in check, even if you are thin.
Having a healthy body fat percentage, daily exercise, a diet that meets your individual needs, and plenty of rest are your best tools for combating visceral fat.
Why Having Excess Belly Fat is a Risk to Your Health
Excess fat can be harmful to your health, but not all fat is created equal, and some types of fat are worse for your health than others.
Belly fat consists of two types of fat, and one of those types puts your health at risk. You don’t even have to be obese or over weight to have the type of fat that puts you at risk for a variety of health problems.
The two types of belly fat are subcutaneous fat and visceral fat.
Subcutaneous fat is the fat that’s found just below the skin. It’s the type of fat you can pinch, the kind that forms fat folds, and it jiggles when you walk. Most of the time subcutaneous fat is what people are talking about when they want to get rid of belly fat.
Even though this is the fat that is the most noticeable, it’s not the type of fat that causes the most health problems. Visceral fat is the fat that puts your health at risk.
It is found deep in the body surrounding vital organs such as your intestines, heart, lungs, liver, and other vital organs.
Because visceral fat is only found in the belly area, having excess belly fat is a risk to your health.
The visceral fat that surrounds your organs releases toxins into your body. One type of the toxin released is called cytokines.
Cytokines cause inflammation in your body and increase your chance of having several types of cancer.
They also affect your body’s sensitivity to insulin, increasing your chance of diabetes and other metabolic conditions.
Once your body becomes insulin resistant, you may struggle with low energy, extreme fluctuations in blood sugar levels, and difficulty losing body fat.
Cytokines also increase your chance of having heart disease, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol.
There’s nothing good that comes from having excess visceral belly fat.
If you care about your health, reducing this harmful belly fat is something you should focus on. There are several things you can do to reduce visceral fat in your midsection and begin healing your body.
The good thing about visceral fat is that it’s easier to lose than subcutaneous fat.
To begin losing visceral belly fat and reducing your health risk, start by reducing your caloric intake to begin the fat loss process. As your body fat percentage drops, your visceral fat will be reduced.
Increasing fiber intake can help you decrease your visceral fat, and it will also help you manage your calorie intake by keeping you feeling full for longer.
One more thing you can do to reduce your belly fat is to manage cortisol levels in your body by getting enough rest and keeping your stress levels under control.
Stress and lack of sleep both cause cortisol levels to increase, and elevated levels of cortisol can cause your body to store more belly fat and make it harder to reduce the belly fat you already have.
If you’re worried that belly fat will adversely affect your health, you’re not wrong to be worried about it.
Visceral belly fat raises your chances of having a variety of health problems, however, if you commit to changing your life and making healthier choices, you will see a reduction in the harmful type of belly fat.
Knowledge is power, and now that you know exactly why having excess belly fat is a risk to your health, you know what you can do to get rid of that dangerous belly fat.
How Do You Know if You Have Excess Belly Fat?
Knowing whether you have excess belly fat or not may seem easy enough, but it’s not always as easy as just seeing if you can see or pinch a roll of fat on your belly area.
Belly fat is a little more complicated than that. You may even have excess belly fat if you’re thin, as weird as that sounds.
Did you know that there are two types of belly fat, one type that’s just below the skin and another type that is further down in your abdominal cavity?
The two types of belly fat are subcutaneous fat and visceral fat.
Subcutaneous fat is just below the skin.
It’s the type of fat that can be seen easily on your body, and it jiggles as you move. It’s the type of fat that is the most noticeable to us and to others.
Visceral fat is the fat that is found further down in your abdominal cavity. It surrounds your liver, heart, intestines, and other vital organs.
This is the dangerous type of fat.
It accumulates around your organs and then it releases toxins into your body. These toxins increase your chance of heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, cancer, diabetes, and other metabolic problems.
Since visceral fat can be difficult to, but it’s the most harmful to your health, it’s important to learn how to detect it. You need to learn how to determine if you have excess belly fat even if you appear to be thin.
There are several ways you can determine if you have excess visceral fat.
One way to accurately determine the amount of visceral fat you have is to have a Dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry, also known as a DXA or DEXA scan.
This is a highly accurate scan that can measure your body. It can tell you how heavy your bones are, how much muscle you have, and how much fat you have.
If you have access to this scan and the means to afford it, it’s a great option to be certain of your visceral fat levels and body fat percentage.
There are also ways you can measure your fat levels at home.
You can measure your waist to see if it’s in a healthy range. If your waist measurement is over 35 inches for a woman or over 40 inches for a man, then you have an unhealthy amount of belly fat.
You can also use an online body fat percentage calculator and input your body measurements into it to see what your body fat percentage is, and if it’s in a healthy range.
Another method is to find your waist to hip ratio and ensure that it’s in a healthy range.
To determine your waist to hip ratio, measure the smallest part of your waist and largest part of your hips, and then divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement. If you’re a woman you’ll want an 8.0 or less waist to hip ratio, and if you’re a man you’ll want a 9.5 or less waist to hip ratio.
All of these are great ways to know if you have excess belly fat.
Now that you know if you have belly fat or not, you will either need to keep doing what you’re doing to keep it in a healthy range, or you’ll have to make some changes in your life.
If you have excess belly fat, you’ll need to start exercising, eating the right amount of calories, and you’ll need to keep your cortisol levels low by getting enough rest and reducing stress.
If you do all of these things, your belly fat will start to melt away and you’ll reduce your chances of a variety of health problems.