Strawberries could help reduce dangerous belly fat – research

Dr Zoe Williams discusses visceral fat on This Morning

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Hidden deep inside your belly, visceral fat surrounds some of your vital organs, like the liver, kidney and intestines. While this precarious position makes it dangerous, research shares a small food that could help burn the culprit.

When you think of fat, your mind might visualise a jiggly substance that you can pinch. But visceral fat is different; it lurks in your abdominal cavity.

While you might not even know about this belly fat, it can lead to severe health problems, ranging from heart disease to diabetes.

Fortunately, emerging evidence suggests that strawberries could provide a helping hand.

The sweet and juicy fruit doesn’t only make for a tasty snack but it also offers both soluble and insoluble fibre.

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When it comes to busting visceral fat, the benefits of fibre are well-established.

Out of the two fibre types, soluble fibre can help slow the speed at which your stomach releases digested food into your gut.

Furthermore, research, published in the journal Obesity, found that the more soluble fibre you eat, the greater reduction in visceral fat you can see.

The researchers from the Wake Forest Baptist Medical Centre suggested that getting more of the goodie from fruits and veggies could help burn the culprit.

The study found that for every 10-gram boost in soluble fibre eaten daily, visceral fat was reduced by 3.7 percent over five years.

Lead researcher Kristen Hairston said: “We know that a higher rate of visceral fat is associated with high blood pressure, diabetes and fatty liver disease.

“Our study found that making a few simple changes can have a big health impact.”

If you want to maximise the weight loss brought on by fibre, the researchers also noticed that exercise can further boost visceral fat shedding.

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Looking at 1,114 people, the researchers conducted a physical exam, a CT scan as well as provided extensive questionnaires focusing on the participants’ lifestyles.

After gathering the initial data, the research team also conducted a follow-up five years later.

The results showed that an increase in soluble fibre was linked with a decrease in visceral fat.

Apart from fibre, strawberries also help to support the production of two fat-burning hormones called leptin and adiponectin.

Adiponectin acts as a barrier against visceral adipose, while leptin is believed to play a role in body fat distribution.

Plus, the American Dietetic Association shares that the sweet snack may help with weight loss by stimulating your metabolism.

While strawberries could help you cut visceral fat, the red fruit also packs high levels of antioxidants, which help to ward off stroke, cancer and high blood pressure.

Based on the research as well as the nutritional profile, strawberries could help reduce the belly fat. The NHS adds that seven fresh strawberries make up one portion size.

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