Friday, June 14, 2024

WELL WOMEN OF COLOR | Rosalind Brooks

March 18, 2018 by  
Filed under Health

Let’s check out the middle!

We all want to wave a magic wand and get rid of our belly fat. And there’s a good reason: excess fat in the abdominal section can be hazardous for your health.

But fat is stored all over the body — so how does an expanding midsection grow your risk for chronic disease and illness?

Fat impacts your health differently, depending on where its located. Most fat found in the arms, buttocks and legs is called “subcutaneous” fat; belly fat is called “visceral” fat. Subcutaneous fat keeps you warm, stores calories, and is squishy. It’s between your muscle and skin. Visceral fat stores calories and is located around your organs and deep within the belly. It’s firmer to the touch.

Having more visceral fat raises your “bad” cholesterol and blood pressure.Visceral fat can also make you less sensitive to insulin, increasing your risk of diabetes.

Thin people can have visceral fat around the tummy area, proving that “skinny” isn’t always synonymous with “healthy.”

To see where your belly stands, do these tests:

  1. Determine which fruit you are. Pear shapes store subcutaneous fat in the lower hip and buttocks area; while apple shapes tend to store visceral fat in the belly and chest.
  2. Place a measuring tape at the top of your belly button and measure around. Men should have a number less than 40 inches and women should have a number less than 35 inches.

Next month we’ll discuss what you can do to lower the numbers if you fell into a higher range.

For support on getting healthy from the inside out and reaching your weight goals, go to and join Wellness University — an online program that provides support, education and an easy-to-follow plan. Email Roz at roz@wellwomenofcolor with any questions.


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