Visceral fat is a harmful type of fat which lies deep inside the abdomen which leads to a large belly and increases a person’s risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and some types of cancers. Health experts repeatedly warn of one lifestyle factor which increases this type of fat. In fact, by learning to have better stress management could help to get rid of your visceral fat.
When faced with a crisis, stress response slows unnecessary body functions so you can focus.
Cortisol is a crucial hormone produced in the adrenal glands. It helps control blood sugar and metabolism, among other things.
Along with other hormones such as adrenaline, cortisol is part of your body’s “fight or flight” response.
When a person experiences periods of prolonged stress it keeps stress hormones levels elevated, along with your blood pressure and blood sugars which in turn affect belly fat.
Stress triggers the adrenal glands to produce cortisol.
Evidence shows that high levels of cortisol increases a person’s appetite circulating insulin and promotes abdominal fat storage.
Glucocorticoids and cortisol redistribute fat towards a person’s stomach producing a more protrude belly and higher levels of visceral fat.
Non-overweight women who are vulnerable to the effects of stress are more likely to have excess abdominal fat, and have higher levels of the stress hormone cortisol, a study conducted at Yale suggests.
We also found that women with greater abdominal fat had more negative moods and higher levels of life stress, said Dr Elissa Epel, lead investigator on the study.
She added: “Greater exposure to life stress or psychological vulnerability to stress may explain their enhanced cortisol reactivity.
“In turn, their cortisol exposure may have led them to accumulate greater abdominal fat.”
In another study, 41 woman who already had a large waist were shown to produce more cortisol in response to a 60-minute stress stimulus.
This influenced subsequent fat distribution and further perpetuated belly fat.
Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) can also be the result of long-term stress which can worsen symptoms of gas and belly bloat.
The findings indicate how important it is for a person to operate better stress management to help burn their belly fat.
Visceral fat, or intra-abdominal fat, is found around your liver, intestines, and other internal organs underneath the abdominal wall.
Some visceral fat gets stored in the omentum, a flap of tissue under the muscles, which grows harder and thicker as more fat is added. This can add inches to your waistline.
Visceral fat contains more cytokines than subcutaneous fat. These proteins can cause low-level inflammation, increasing the risk for chronic health problems.
Visceral fat also releases more retinol-binding protein 4 (RBPR), which can lead to insulin resistance.