Excess visceral fat, which typically appears in your midsection as belly fat, is known for being especially damaging to heart health by promoting inflammation.
This happens because it’s more active than other types of fat at releasing inflammatory molecules and hormones that can lead to such issues as plaque buildup in arteries and damage to organs and joints.
This can lead to heart disease as well as type 2 diabetes and other chronic illnesses that damage the heart and circulatory system.
Getting rid of belly fat involves lifestyle changes like exercise and stress reduction, but a diet low in added sugar, carbs and red meat is crucial. And certain foods excel at helping you eliminate visceral fat through nutrients and antioxidants.
- Avocado — Its nutrients include potassium, fiber, antioxidants and minerals, and it also has loads of monounsaturated fat, all of which are good for your heart. One study found participants who ate an avocado per day saw bigger decreases in belly fat than others who ate the same number of calories, but no avocado.
- Lentils — These legumes are potent with soluble and nonsoluble fiber, potassium, fiber, folate, calcium, iron and polyphenols (plant-based antioxidants). Lentils are often used as a meat substitute in dishes and are also splendid in salads, soups, curries and more.
- Tree nuts — Almonds, cashews, Brazil nuts, pecans, hazelnuts, pistachios, pecans, pine nuts, walnuts and macadamias all bear plant protein, fiber, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants associated with lower body mass indexes and blood pressure. The benefits can stack up from as little as a quarter-ounce per day.
- Whole grains — They’re carbs, sure, but their complexity leads to several health benefits. Their consumption has an inverse relation to visceral and other types of fat in the body. Consume larger amounts of whole grains when you’re expecting to be active than when you’re not.
- Wild salmon — It’s one of the best food sources of vitamin D you can find, and D is associated with lower levels of belly fat in men and women. Farmed salmon also contains this vitamin but at considerably lower levels.