Go flat out for health

Research has shown that moderate regular exercise can prevent the accumulation of deep abdominal fat.

UAEasy.com pictureThe study of overweight, sedentary adults found that those who started working out on treadmills and stationary bikes tended to lose, or at least not add fat that accumulates around the abdominal organs.

This deep abdominal fat is linked to a number of ill health effects, including a higher risk of type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol and heart disease.

The new findings show that even moderate exercise, such as brisk walking, may put the brakes on fat accumulation. What’s more, study participants who got the most exercise - the equivalent of jogging 20 miles per week (32km) - shed both visceral fat and the superficial layers of abdominal fat.

The bottom-line is that inactivity comes at the “high cost” of rapid fat accumulation, while regular exercise can at least prevent such an increase.

But long-term weight maintenance, as opposed to repeated yo-yo dieting, is a worthy goal. Exercise now, and you might not be 20kg heavier in five years. However, the million-dollar question with exercise is how to get people to do it long-term.

Moderate exercise in this study - walking for about three hours a week - was enough to prevent fat gain. It’s also in line with health officials’ advice for all adults to fit in 30 minutes of moderate activity on most, if not all, days. That’s a level of exercise most people can achieve, don’t you think?

So, mark “gym days” in your diary and give yourself a belly to be proud of!

  • This article was brought to you by the fitness team, Beach Club, Beach Rotana Hotel & Towers, Abu Dhabi, telephone 02 6979305.

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