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How Dangerous Is That “Beer Belly”?

How Dangerous Is That “Beer Belly”?

    No one wants to be fat, but does it matter where the fat is located?  Apparently it does. Researchers have found visceral or intra-abdominal fat is more dangerous than other fats. This “beer belly” fat is connected to many health problems, including heart disease, stroke, and some types of cancer. Scientists aren’t quite sure why this type of fat is so dangerous. The theory is that all fat cells secrete hazardous chemicals, and those deep in the abdomen release three times as many of these chemicals as those under the skin. Also, the chemicals made by visceral fat cells are dumped directly into the liver, causing disruption in normal liver operations.
 How can you tell if you have too much of this fat? Nutritionists say that women that have waists of more than 35 inches and men who have waists more than 40 inches are at increased risk of health problems. What should you do to get rid of this fat? Take a walk--literally. Studies have shown that just walking 1 hour a day is better than dieting to lose the same amount of weight and visceral fat. So get your tennis shoes on and take a hike. Your mind and body will appreciate itJ. (Diabetes Self Management Sept/Oct 2009)
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