Even if your overall body weight is in the normal range, carrying excess fat in your belly brings a greater risk for developing heart disease, according to the American Heart Association (AHA) in a statement published online April 22, 2021, by Circulation. The AHA’s review of the science found that the riskiest type of fat for your heart is visceral adipose tissue (VAT), which nestles deep inside, surrounding your organs (not the kind of fat just below the skin that you can pinch). VAT is biologically active, cranking out inflammatory substances that can harm blood vessels and cause other kinds of cardiovascular problems. To assess your VAT, measure your height and your midsection at the level of your navel: your waist size ideally should be no greater than one-half your height. On the bright side, the AHA’s experts say following basic exercise guidelines helps shrink unhealthy fat deposits. Aim for 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity activity, such as brisk walking, swimming, jogging, or high-energy workouts. The goal is to increase the ratio of your lean body mass (like muscle) to fatty body mass. regular weight training can also help with that.
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