Why is belly fat dangerous?

Why is belly fat dangerous?

More belly fat means more fat around your organs.

The more belly fat you have, the more fat you probably have stored deep in your abdomen surrounding your heart, lungs, liver, kidneys, and other vital organs.

Belly fat can negatively affect your health

This deep abdominal fat (visceral fat) is thought to negatively affect your health and metabolism. It may:

  • Release harmful substances into your bloodstream.
  • Disrupt your body’s normal hormone balance.
  • Affect the normal functioning of your organs.

For example, visceral fat may interfere with your liver’s ability to properly regulate your cholesterol and blood sugar.

Belly fat is linked to disease

High amounts of belly fat (and therefore, probably visceral fat) are linked to: type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and high triglycerides.

Carrying excess weight around your belly or mid-section is called abdominal obesity. Measure your waist circumference to see if you are at risk.

ACSM’s guidelines for exercise testing and prescription, 7th ed. 2006
Bray GA. Don’t throw the baby out with the bath water. Am J of Clin Nutr 2004;79:347-349.

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