Solid Evidence That Belly Fat Kills and How to Remove Belly Fat

Being overweight increases your risk of heart disease, diabetes and maybe even some types of cancer. We all know that… though this knowledge doesn’t seem to be making any dent in obesity rates, which are continuing to rise at pretty alarming rates.

The need to remove belly fat is of particular concern; as unlike fat in other areas, abdominal blubber pads internal organs and releases hormones that promote inflammation. This phenomena is more common in men than women and experts have long been convinced that those who carry weight around their middle are at higher risk for health problems.

However, until now, the role of belly fat in disease risk was unclear, but this is no longer the case. The New England Journal of Medicine published a report based on some startling European research that came to light in October 2008.

It seems that if you suffer with belly fat (also affectionately known as a spare tire, love handles, beer belly or pot belly) you have a higher risk of death over a 10 year period compared to a person whose BMI (Body Mass Index) matches yours, but who isn’t carrying all that extra fat around the middle.

The study, conducted by a team of researchers at the European Prospective Investigation Into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) looked at 359,387 people aged from 25 to 70 years old living in ten European countries (Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Norway, Spain, Sweden, and the United Kingdom).

The EPIC’s main role is to look at the links between diet, nutritional status, lifestyle and environmental factors and the incidence of cancer and other chronic diseases.

They found that those with a higher BMI were at a greater risk of dying during the ten-year study than normal weight subjects… no real surprise there. But what was startling was that when waist circumference and waist-to-hip ratios were isolated, these measurements were strongly associated with a higher risk of dying as well. In fact, a 2-inch increase in waist measurement raised risk of death by 17{a3acb2be643effc4b7b4b3705df5cb2eae026059a1d075d54be8af4d92e7e619} for men and 13{a3acb2be643effc4b7b4b3705df5cb2eae026059a1d075d54be8af4d92e7e619} for women, no matter how good their BMI might be.

In fact, what was really surprising was the link between abdominal fat and death was strongest in people who had a healthy weight for their height.

“I was surprised that even people who would be considered normal weight in terms of their [body mass index] have a higher risk of death if their waist circumference is increased,” says Tobias Pischon, M.D., the study’s lead author and a member of the department of epidemiology at the German Institute of Human Nutrition (DIfE).

So what should you do? Research from 2003 suggests that you can work to remove belly fat by a combination of increasing your intake of dietary fiber and doing some weight training. Also aiming to be more active overall with some form of exercise for 30 minutes each day and taking in fewer trans-fats as part of your day to day diet will all help to shrink your waistline and improve your health.

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