Visceral fat is a condition that diets, exercises, yoga, and supplements aim to counteract. The reason is soon explained. We are not talking about an aesthetic problem but a potential health risk, always in the long term and if not properly treated. Unfortunately, the fat that causes an increase in waistline is also the most difficult to reduce and an approach that includes nutrition, but also physical activity and herbal medicine is needed. Science is constantly looking for effective remedies to combat abdominal fat and thus reduce the waistline, so let's try to better understand why this type of fat is more dangerous and what the most recent scientific research suggests to fight it. One last thing, in the article we will talk about fat accumulation in the waist, which should not be confused with abdominal swelling caused by other conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome, allergies or intolerances.
Why abdominal fat is more dangerous
Sometimes fat accumulates in the abdominal adipose tissue, between the internal organs. This type of fat is the most dangerous as it is not inert fat, but active, capable of stimulating the release of hormones but also of pro-inflammatory substances. Among hormones, abdominal fat is known to promote the release of resistin, which in turn increases inflammation and insulin resistance . As a result, in the long run and if no action is taken, persistent abdominal fat can increase cardiovascular risk, but also the risk of developing diabetes and damage to the liver, pancreas and muscles .
Probiotics against abdominal fat
Probiotics are live bacteria, which, once taken through supplements or special drinks or yoghurt, overcome the stomach barrier and reach the intestine, where they go to reinforce the microbiota. A healthy and well-balanced microbiota helps fight inflammation, strengthens the intestinal barrier by preventing toxins, bacteria and pro-inflammatory substances from reaching other organs and regulates appetite, thus helping to counteract weight gain. Studies have shown that taking a mix of probiotics containing Bifidobacterium, Lactococcus and Propionibacterium reduced overweight but also abdominal fat .
To reduce the waistline, help comes from black cumin
Black cumin, or nigella sativa, is able to reduce the waistline, even if the mechanism of action is not yet understood. Not only that, black cumin also brings other important benefits, such as helping to keep blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure under control . Avoid nigella sativa in pregnancy and ask your doctor for advice if you are taking any medications.
The benefits of ginger
Ginger is a highly appreciated spice not only in the kitchen but also as a natural remedy. Among the various active ingredients of ginger, 6 gingerol certainly stands out, which gives it spiciness but also brings anti-inflammatory, anti-diabetic, hepatoprotective, antioxidant and anticancer properties. 6 gingerol is also able to reduce the accumulation of fat in the body and the inflammation generated by adipose tissue .
The role of nutrition for a slimmer waistline
As mentioned in the introduction, the fight against visceral fat should embrace many areas, including nutrition. Studies have observed that a diet rich in fruit, vegetables, legumes and whole grains is able to counteract abdominal fat. In particular, an important role is played by fibres, folic acid and beta glucans, the latter contained above all in oats, bran, mushrooms and algae, which effectively counteract visceral fat . And don't forget the green tea. In fact, studies have observed that drinking at least 4 cups of green tea a day reduces the risk of developing abdominal obesity by 44% .
Yoga, pilates and physical exercise to reduce the waistline
To reduce the waistline it is important to move and burn calories, always in moderation and respecting one's body. Yoga can help, especially when it requires you to perform a sequence of positions, which involve a greater expenditure of energy. But it's not just this. In fact, as the authors of a very interesting study aimed at understanding the benefits of yoga on women with an increase in waistline indicate, the reduction of the waistline in 12 weeks and the loss of up to 1.3 kg of pure fat cannot be traced back only to an activity that makes you burn more calories. According to the authors of the study, yoga improves flexibility and counteracts muscle and joint pain, thus making it easier to move and perform other activities in addition to yoga. Not only does yoga help get rid of obsessions and negative thoughts, helping to counteract nervous hunger and thus being overweight, but it also reduces stress and cortisol levels. Indeed, an increase in cortisol can lead to an increase in abdominal fat . In addition, yoga helps reduce inflammation and purifies . As far as exercise goes, a brisk walk or light jog are certainly great ways to get moving and protect your health, but they're less helpful when it comes to fighting belly fat. Instead, studies have shown that high-intensity intermittent exercise is more effective when it comes to reducing waistlines. The exact mechanism is still poorly understood but it is certain that this type of training is able to counteract insulin resistance, improve glucose tolerance and reduce abdominal fat, especially in overweight men and women with type 2 diabetes. This type of activity can be practiced, for example, with a stationary bike. It's about doing a sprint by pedaling fast for 8 seconds, then pedaling at normal and low intensity for 12 seconds and repeating the sequence, for 20 minutes a day. The benefits were observed after 3 months .