10 fascinating facts about fat


1 Get to know the enemy so you can fight it more successfully

2 Drinking too much alcohol adds to your weight because of its high sugar and kilojoule content. Studies have shown it also makes you feel hungry by affecting hormones that regulate your satiety (level of fullness) – so you eat more when drinking as well as the morning after a heavy bout.

3 A simple tape measure test determines if your belly is too big, according to America’s department of health and human services. Wrap a tape measure around your tummy just above your hip bones. Men with waist sizes more than 101,6 cm or women with waist sizes above 88,9 cm could have a potentially harmful amount of belly fat.

4 Have you noticed more men than women have boeps? It’s due to our hormones. The abdomen is the first area where men store fat. For women under the age of 40, fat tends to be stored in the hips, thighs and buttocks. After 40, as oestrogen levels drop, fat is redistributed to the tummy area.

5 Thin people can be “fat”. Some slim people with a genetic predisposition to store fat around the organs might have higher cholesterol and blood sugar. An inactive lifestyle can exacerbate this fat storage.

6 The average person gains about 1 g of extra body fat a day as they age. This amounts to 365 g of extra body fat a year.

7 After 30 we tend to be less active, which increases muscle loss. This results in a decreasing metabolic rate, making us more susceptible to weight gain.

8 We all have about 50 billion fat cells. Each fat cell can expand up to 10 times its original size. Fat is the most calorific nutrient we can eat at 38 kilojoules per gram. Carbohydrates and protein contain about 17.

9 First lose fat then build muscle. Exercising one part of your body in the hope of gaining muscle there won’t work if you don’t first lose fat. For example, stomach crunches won’t give you a six-pack if you have fat in your tummy area. Overall weight loss through cardiovascular exercise and strength training will help you get the results you want.

10 Fat is biologically active. Excessive visceral fat cells (the unhealthiest kind of fat, stored around your organs) release inflammatory compounds and hormones that can increase your risk of insulin resistance, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, dementia and cancer.

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