Have you recently began an exercise regime hoping to lose weight but struggling to do so? Ever feel like no matter what you do, you’re still not losing weight....? Read on...
Recent research suggests that even after 2-3 months of a new exercise regime, you may not see the weight loss results you are hoping for. However, this definitely doesn’t mean you should stop exercising and here’s why. The same research suggests that depending on your current physical condition, your weight and how much excess fat you are carrying, the gains you will see from a few months of regular outdoor exercise such as an Get Fit Today fitness class may not always lead to a reduction in overall weight, but it is likely to result in a reduction of visceral fat. In fact, after two to six months this reduction can be quite significant and some of the participants in the study who had lost no weight according to the scales had actually reduced their visceral fat by 6%.
So, what is visceral fat?
Of course, this is all fine and dandy, as long as you know what visceral body fat is.😀
If you are eating more calories than you are burning, your body stores the excess calories as fat cells around your organs. You might not always be able to see this as visceral fat is the deep fat inside your body around your vital organs, but as I’m sure you can guess – it’s not good!
Visceral fat is linked to coronary heart disease and diabetes, as well as a number of different cancers and even Alzheimer’s disease. Excess visceral body fat can interfere with liver function and can disrupt your organs’ normal function. This can lead to an increase in cholesterol, particularly bad cholesterol, as well as increased insulin resistance, which can lead to type 2 diabetes as mentioned. Have we put you off yet? 😳 Do you have too much visceral fat.
Visceral fat can be measured using specialist scales and ranges from 0 through to 59. Anything below 12 is considered healthy and the higher the number, the less healthy it is and the closer you are to all of those horrible illnesses mentioned above. If you are interested in knowing your visceral fat level, we can measure this for you along with lots of other things as part of our 25 point health check (drop us a message at email@example.com)
From experience of working with corporate clients in the past, we know it is possible to reduce your visceral fat levels by 3-5 points in just a couple of months with some very minor tweaks to your eating habits and exercise regime.
How much is too much?
It can be hard to identify if you have too much visceral body fat without using the specialist scales mentioned above. However, there is another way to estimate this so you have a rough idea which is to calculate your hip-to-waist ratio. The World Health Organization recommends that a hip-to-waist ratio higher than 0.9 for men or 0.85 for women is high risk. To work out what yours is, you need to divide the circumference of your waist by the circumference of your hips.
When measuring your waist, place the tape measure comfortably around you about an inch above your belly button and direct onto your skin, write this measurement down.
Then lower the tape measure to the widest point of your hips (generally around the bottom of your trouser pockets) and write this measurement down.
Then divide the waist measurement by the hip measurement. For example, a male with a waist of 90cm and hips of 110cm would have a hip-to-waist ratio of 0.81 (90/110 = 0.81) which is in the healthy range, whereas a woman with a waist measurement of 95cm and a hip measurement of 105cm would have a hip-to-waist ratio of 0.90 (95/105 = 0.90) which would be in the unhealthy range
What can you do about it?
If you have measured your hip-to-waist ratio and worked out that you are over the recommended healthy range, you need to do something to reduce this. Unsurprisingly, researchers found that exercise is highly effective in reducing this type of fat (even if it has little effect on your actual weight).
On average for every 1% reduction in body weight you would see around a 3% reduction in visceral body fat. Exercises such as running and exercise classes based on high intensity interval training such as a Get Fit Today sessions are highly effective in reducing fat and helping you get fitter.
We recommend that you exercise 2-4 times a week to see the benefits you want. The government suggests that an adult should exercise for around 150 minutes a week (which is 2hr 30min) so if you can complete 2 GFT sessions and add in some brisk walking and a generally active lifestyle then you will start to see some fantastic changes.
What are the first steps to reducing visceral fat?
If you have a high waist to hip ratio and want to reduce your visceral body fat the first step is to get active and start exercising. If you’re not already a member of Get Fit Today, sign up HERE for a free trial.
If you are interested in having one of our full body MOT 25-point health checks, please get in touch via email to us at ‘firstname.lastname@example.org’.
So get rid of those scales, or atleast donut focus on the number. Remember that around 60z of your body is made up of water, so that number you see on the scales includes all of this, your bones, your skins, hair and everything else. It’s impossible to know how much fat you are carrying from standard bathroom scales.
We look forward to seeing you in the park soon 👍