The hidden fat, the hidden story...
“They told me I have a high level of visceral fat!”
Visceral fat refers to the fat that is hidden and stored around your internal organs. Visceral fat should be only a small proportion of total body fat. Keep in mind, you need some stored fat, just in healthy amounts and parked in the right places!
Storing too much visceral fat comes with serious health risks and has been linked to a variety of diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease – but this list really does goes on. Without dwelling on the health risks of storing high amounts of this type of fat, let’s just jump into some things you can do to keep your visceral fat at a healthy level.
Move your body and incorporate moderate-intensity physical activity into your daily life for at least 30 minutes. This may sound hard. You must find exercise which you enjoy and is achievable. It has to be a good fit with your lifestyle and something you don’t loathe doing, otherwise chances are you won’t stick with it. Where to start? Consider whether you like exercising with people or on your own? How can you have the most fun while exercising? There are so many ways to get your body moving. Good news, housework and domestic chores can be classified as moderate-intensity physical activity! Brisk walking also makes the cut! Get creative and try new things. They won’t all work but you’ll only find out by trying. Make exercise something you miss if you don’t do it.
High consumption of trans fats and fructose are two players that appear to be linked with the storage of visceral fat. Common food sources of trans fats include hydrogenated vegetable oils, biscuits and other baked goods. Foods containing a lot of fructose include sweet processed foods, sodas, sauces, spreads and sweeteners. Sticking with naturally whole foods is key to maintaining good health. Replacing simple carbohydrates with whole carbohydrates and lean protein is recommended along with the inclusion of healthy fats.
Some “other” things
Don’t overlook the importance of a balanced and holistic lifestyle where you get enough sleep and have enough fun. Stress less. Enjoying the little things and having gratitude are important. How could happiness affect your health? Would happiness change your choices?
There are many other potentially contributing factors to the storage of visceral fat. Science is always evolving. Focus on the basics before getting caught up in tiny detail. All our bodies are unique, so what may affect one person may not affect another. This supports trial and error, seeing what works for you and what doesn’t.
Find out if what you’re doing is getting results. Body Audit NZ TM provides comprehensive body composition testing which includes measurement of your level of visceral fat - giving you the information you need to succeed. Knowledge is power! Regular scanning every 8 weeks will give you the information you need to track changes.
Don’t let visceral fat affect your story!
Have a healthy and happy March!