How Abdominal Fat is Harmful and Thigh Fat is Beneficial in Obesity

Abdominal fat or belly fat is one of the primary risk factors for developing diabetes and heart ailments. Researchers from Mayoclinic.com have found how belly fat increases this risk and fat in the thighs reduce this risk. The results of their study are published in the October 5 2010 issue of the Journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS). This study was funded by the National Institutes of Health, the U.S. Public Health Service, Mayo Clinic, The Noaber Foundation and the Robert and Arlene Kogod Center on Aging.

Knowledge Gained from the Research on Abdominal Fat and Belly Fat Growing Mechanisms:

  • An 8 week study that focused on 15 men and 13 women was conducted where these participants were fed energy drinks, candy bars and ice creams to put on weight.
  • Researchers at MayoClinic measured the body fat and cell size of fats prior to and after the study.
  • The participants gained 2.5 kilograms of fat in the upper half of the body and 1.5 kilograms in the lower half on average.
  • The body started to receive signals of producing fat in the upper body even prior to the weight gain.
  • Researchers found that increased belly fat raised the changes of developing obesity related conditions and increase of fat in the thighs lowered this risk.
  • The study discovered that fat gets stored in the belly because of the expansion in the size of the fat cells present in that region.
  • Alternatively, in the thighs the fat is gained by the rise in the number of fat cells.
  • This difference in the process of fat growth is responsible for the different health effects.

Significance of the Research on Abdominal Fat and Belly Fat Growing Mechanisms:

The number of fat cells in the body is believed to be constant in adults. The present research study is found to challenge this understanding. It serves as evidence to the idea that if a body possesses the ability to produce more fat in the lower half and helps in providing protection to the upper body fat related complications like diabetes and heart ailments.


MayoClinic: Mayo Clinic Finds Upper, Lower Body Gain Weight Differently

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