Fat under your skin (called subcutaneous fat) is not the worst kind of fat. It’s when a thick layer forms around your vital organs such as your heart, liver and kidneys (visceral fat), that you run into trouble.
If you have a lot of belly fat, it means you are very likely to have fat around your organs too. Belly fat is linked with type 2 diabetes and heart disease (source).
This link is independent of age and overall weight. Yes this means that even if you are a healthy weight, if you have belly fat, your health is at risk.
1. Popcorn: When it comes to whole grains, most of us turn to breads or cereals. However, these are often processed and don’t give as much nutritional bang for your buck as you might like. Popcorn, on the other hand, is a 100% unprocessed whole grain.
People who include a lot of whole grains in their diet have lower levels of subcutaneous fat in the abdominal region. They also have less dangerous visceral fat sources.
2. Coconut Oil: There is some interesting research around coconut oil and fat storage. Coconut oil is not stored as fat in your body as readily as other oils due to its large proportion of medium chain fatty acids.
Medium chain fatty acids are converted to energy quickly rather than being stored as fat in your body.
3. Red Wine: Moderate red wine consumption has been associated with good health as part of the Mediterranean diet for many years now. This is mostly attributed to its polyphenol content.
Polyphenols are naturally-occurring antioxidants associated with a variety of positive health effects.
4. Greek Yogurt: Greek yogurt is a great option for weight loss as it is full of protein which helps keep your appetite in check. Higher protein intake is linked to lower waist circumference.
5. Konjac and Shirataki Noodles: Shirataki noodles were in fashion among dieters a few years ago but there is actually some solid science behind their ability to banish belly fat.
6. Green Tea: Green tea is another great addition to a diet for weight loss. It can boost energy and suppress your appetite.
Researchers also believe that “catechins” in green tea can stimulate the body to burn calories and lose belly fat.
7. Pumpkin Seeds: Pumpkin seeds are a tasty snack that may just help you shed belly fat. They contain high levels of a nutrient called L-arginine.
Consuming L-arginine for six weeks resulted in a significant reduction in waist circumference, one study has shown.
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