How to lose killer fat around your belly

When you are diagnosed with diabetes, the first piece of advice you receive from your doctor is: lose weight. The fact is… most diabetics have too much belly fat.

You have two types of fat around your waist… subcutaneous fat and visceral fat.

subcutaneous fat It is the fat that is found under the skin. It is visible fat and is usually soft and mushy, which is why it is often referred to as ‘love tires’ when it is around the waist. If you are not overweight and lead an active life, this type of fat is not dangerous even if your belly sticks out a bit. It only becomes a problem if you are severely overweight.

visceral fat is different. It’s not that visible. This is because it is ‘deep fat’, meaning it is found within the abdominal wall where it surrounds the organs and releases hormones (which is why it is also called ‘active’ fat). Too much of this fat can result in the release of excessive amounts of hormones…this causes inflammation, putting you at risk for a variety of health problems.

Unlike subcutaneous fat, visceral fat can make your stomach feel hard. Although not visible, as visceral fat grows, the belly expands. A hard, protruding stomach indicates danger.

Why is visceral fat bad?

Many chronic health conditions are caused and/or worsened by this type of fat. These include heart disease, diabetes, some types of cancer, and back pain.

heart disease… release of visceral fat cells cytokines, chemical messengers that affect the actions of other cells, such as those that control blood pressure, cholesterol, and insulin regulation. Since cytokines affect organ function, having them floating around in the body is not good. High blood pressure and high cholesterol levels contribute to heart disease.

Visceral fat tends to affect men and women at different stages of their lives. Young women tend to accumulate subcutaneous fat on the hips and thighs, while young men tend to add visceral fat in the belly. Therefore, men in their 30s are more likely to experience heart disease than women. Women are more at risk of having visceral fat later, when they reach menopause.

Diabetes… people who are overweight or obese are 90 times more likely to develop diabetes because abdominal fat affects how their organs work. Studies indicate that people with deep abdominal fat lose sensitivity to insulin, the hormone that regulates blood glucose levels.

If you have diabetes or are diabetic, you need to lose weight and reduce your visceral fat in order for your blood sugar levels to normalize.

Cancer… cancer is caused by mutations in our cells. When we have excess visceral fat, it signals our body to produce hormones that cause our cells to divide and multiply. The more often our cells divide, the greater the chance that one of them will mutate into a cancer cell.

Therefore, more fat means more opportunities for cancer to develop. In fact, the WHO states that up to a third of all colon, kidney and digestive tract cancers are related to being overweight.

Sprain and back pain…your core, meaning your abdomen or the center of your body, needs to be strong for good balance and healthy joints, and to protect yourself from injury. Having too much abdominal fat usually means that the abdominal muscles are weak due to the visceral fat that surrounds the vital organs. When these core muscles are weak, the back muscles have to recover. As a result, you are likely to strain your back and experience chronic back pain.

What causes visceral fat?

There are many reasons why you gain weight around the waist…eating too much…getting older…family traits…alcohol…stress.

Eat excessively… when we eat more calories than we use in our daily activities, our bodies store the extra calories as fat. We all need to eat less.

growing older…as we get older we start to lose muscle mass and gain fat. This is normal but it means that if we do not learn to eat less we will gain weight, that is, we will gain weight.

family traits…our genetics and family history play a role in the type of fat we gain. If your parents had excessive visceral fat, chances are you have too much, too, unless you take steps to stay lean and trim.

Alcohol…drinking a lot of intoxicating beverages (wine, beer, or spirits) contributes to the buildup of “beer belly,” which is primarily visceral fat. But keep in mind that a beer belly can be developed by drinking wine or spirits, not just beer.

Stress… continual high levels of stress, of the kind we experience in modern life, cause a buildup of cortisol, the stress hormone, in our systems. Over time, this hormone leads to an increase in the amount of fat around the belly.

Who is at higher risk for visceral fat?

Anyone at any age who overeats (meaning eats more than they burn off in various activities) will develop belly fat. However, it tends to increase with age, especially among women.

People most at risk of developing excessive visceral fat are…white men…African American women…Indian men and subcontinental women…people who drink sugary drinks…people who already are overweight or obese.

The good news is that visceral abdominal fat responds very well to diet…and all abdominal fat can be significantly reduced through exercise.

So, to reduce your tummy line, forget about pills, purges and herbal remedies, and ignore miracle cures… you can get rid of belly fat naturally with nothing more than diet healthy and lots of exercise.

Reduce belly fat through diet.

One of the best ways to reduce both types of abdominal fat… subcutaneous and visceral… is to create a calorie deficit, that is, eat fewer calories than your body burns. All you need to be able to do is estimate the calories you eat each day and reduce that number by at least 25%. It’s not too hard to do, and it works.

At the same time, you should follow the Beating Diabetes diet. Here it is:

Eat natural foods that are low in sugar, low in fat, low in salt, and high in fiber, and have a low glycemic index. Your diet should consist primarily of plants and lean protein. Wash your food with plenty of water.

Following this diet is quite easy.

Get rid of sugary foods and drinks first… no more soft drinks or sugar in your tea and coffee, which have been linked in some studies to the development of visceral fat. You should also eliminate cakes and sweets, in fact, any food with added sugar.

If you have a sugar craving, fight the craving…it can be done. Eating lean protein from legumes and lean meats can help you feel full and reduce cravings.

To reverse your diabetes and reduce visceral fat, you need to cut as much fat out of your diet as possible. You must completely eliminate trans fats and saturated fats which are closely linked to the development of visceral fat. This means eating unprocessed foods, meaning lean meats, avocados, and other fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as beans and oats that are full of soluble fiber.

To reduce your salt intake simply stop using the salt shaker and avoid all processed foods as these are full of salt, both to preserve and to enhance. In fact, processed foods also often contain large amounts of sugar and fat to enhance flavors.

High-fiber foods are whole grains like oats, most vegetables, and fruits. Getting plenty of fiber ensures smooth digestion (as long as you drink plenty of water).

Eating whole grains means avoiding simple carbohydrates, such as white bread, other refined grains, and sugary foods, which are low in nutritional value but high in calories. These foods are high on the glycemic index, meaning they digest quickly, leading to spikes in blood glucose, the scourge of diabetics, and the rapid development of visceral fat. Whole grains digest slowly (meaning they have a low GI) and are much healthier.

Reduce belly fat with exercise

Research has shown that exercise plays an important role in eliminating abdominal fat. A study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology in October 2005 compared men who exercised with men who didn’t and found that exercise is essential for reducing visceral fat.

The researchers found that a modest exercise program prevented significant increases in visceral fat, while more vigorous exercise resulted in significant reductions in visceral, subcutaneous, and total abdominal fat without any change in calorie intake.

However, performing exercises that target the stomach area, such as sit-ups and sit-ups, do not eliminate abdominal fat… although they do strengthen the abdominal muscles.

There are several ways to reduce abdominal fat through exercises:

Get moving… simply increasing your level of physical activity will burn more calories. If you have a sedentary occupation, get up from your desk and move around every hour or so. Parking far away from your destination so you have to walk the last few feet and take the stairs instead of the elevator can burn more calories and trim your belly.

Do cardio… gets your heart pumping and reduces visceral fat by burning calories. But start slowly by walking or swimming before you start running or jumping rope.

High Intensity Interval Training…in which you alternate intense exercise with slower activities, burns belly fat and is ideal if you are not ready for sustained high intensity exercise. Start slowly (say) by walking for 5 minutes and then running for 1 minute.

Strength training…can help you lose weight because muscle burns more calories than fat. You need to practice regularly several days a week. In addition to reducing belly fat, strength training can help you control your diabetes and prevent other chronic diseases like osteoporosis.


Belly fat can lead to serious health problems whether you are diabetic or not.

But you can easily get rid of it with diet and exercise…

  • Eat fewer calories than you burn
  • Avoid sugary foods
  • Avoid fats in your diet as much as possible
  • Avoid added salt
  • Avoid refined carbohydrates
  • Avoid processed foods
  • eat lean protein
  • Eat foods that digest slowly
  • Eat lots of soluble fiber
  • Drink alcohol in moderation
  • Reduce your stress levels
  • Do aerobic exercises (cardio)

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