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Health Risks of Belly Fat

5 Tips to Burn Belly Fat

From the Million Dollar Body Club - Join Today and Workout to Win!

Which of the following types of body fat is most harmful to your health?

  1. Underarm fat
  2. Hip, thigh, and buttock fat
  3. Abdominal fat
  4. None of the above
  5. All of the above

SalmonAnswer: 3.

We're all pretty aware of the difference between the good and bad types of consumed fat. Saturated fats clog arteries whereas unsaturated fats typically aid our health. For example, you can probably agree that eating a cheeseburger with a bag of potato chips isn't the best option when compared to a fresh salmon fillet and a side of greens dressed with olive oil. But what about the other side of the story? What about the different kinds of body fat we carry?

Belly fat: the bad news

The reason C is the answer is because abdominal, or belly, fat is the kind that lies deep inside the body. Doctors call this visceral fat because it wraps around your "viscera"—your vital organs such as your heart, liver, lungs, and stomach. And against conventional wisdom, it's not lifeless fat. It actually acts like an organ itself, generating hormones that can actually cause weight gain while preventing the production of healthy substances that can lead to weight loss.

In fact, studies just coming out are changing the way doctors view obesity as they learn more about visceral fat and how it can change the body's internal chemistry. What this fat ultimately does is cause us to age quicker and become vulnerable to disease.

Belly-burning tips

CardioBut here's the good news: it's relatively easy to get rid of visceral fat. Why? Because abdominal fat is metabolically very active. You're not stuck with it forever; you can burn it up! Just follow these five important tips:

  1. Amp up your cardio routine. Cardiovascular exercise, which is any activity that gets your heart rate up for an extended period of time, is an excellent way to burn fat and accelerate your metabolism. If you haven't been keeping a regular cardio routine, start one today. Go for a brisk walk, a hike in the hills, or pop in an exercise video. And if you're a veteran cardio queen or king, add 10 more minutes to your regular routine. Take it to the next level and challenge yourself!

  2. Strength trainingDo more strength training. Adding resistance with weights, balls, or bands to your workout allows you to increase your lean muscle mass and boost your resting metabolism. You'll burn more even while you're sitting on the couch . . . sleeping!

  3. YogaDon't forget to make time for rest and relaxation! Try meditative yoga, set aside 30 minutes a day to read a book in your favorite chair, or take a warm bath before bedtime. We need time-outs at least once a day to catch our breath in our bodies and minds. The less stress we have, the easier it is to control those stress-related hormones that tell the body to hold onto fat.

  4. Healthy unsaturated fatsFocus on nourishing your cells with healthy unsaturated fats, such as those from nuts, olive oil, and fish. Avoid the saturated and trans fats commonly found in processed, packaged foods and fatty cuts of meat. Try to keep your intake of healthy fats at approximately 30 percent of your daily caloric intake.

  5. Focus on waist sizeFocus on waist size, not pound size. If you're on a weight-loss plan or are about to start one, don't worry so much about what the scale reads. As you trim body fat and increase lean muscle mass, you might not see a huge difference on the scale right away. So instead of using that to gauge your progress, measure your waistline once a week and track your results. Chances are you'll see your waistline get smaller!

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MEET COACH
RICHARD DAFTER

I am a full time Beachbody Coach. I motivate and guide close to 2,500 Club members and head a team of 11 Beachbody Coaches who are all committed to helping you reach your goals. Before joining BeachBody, I was a certified personal trainer for more than a dozen years and have been a running coach for over 20 years. Continued...

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