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Visceral fat belongs to a club of conditions that can hike your risk of heart disease so stamping it out is imperative. The fat is more dangerous than subcutaneous fat, which lies just under the surface of your skin. Visceral fat is hidden deep in your tummy, neighbouring vital organs such as the liver and intestines. Fortunately, sensible dietary decisions could help burn it.
Apart from vitamins and nutrients, colourful plant-based foods often pack potent disease-fighting compounds like antioxidants.
This means that turning to natural resources – whether it’s fruit, veg or spices – offers various health benefits.
Even stubborn visceral fat is not immune to these powerful effects, with one drink seeming to be especially promising.
Research, published in the journal Nutrients, found that apple-cabbage juice could burn the fatty culprit in as little as “weeks”.
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The research team set out to observe the effects of this fruit and veg duo on obesity in rats.
The study used two drinks – one was a cocktail of pure cabbage and apples while the other was fermented by probiotic strain Lactobacillus Plantarum EM isolated from kimchi.
The animal models were given 10 millilitres of one of these beverages per kilogram of body weight.
After following this diet protocol for eight weeks, the research team noticed that both juices proved effective at regulating body and liver weight, including visceral fat.
This research team looked at the effects of polyphenols, which are a type of antioxidant, in apples on subjects with different weights.
The long-term intake of the polyphenol-rich beverage was able to “significantly” decrease the levels of belly fat in the human participants.
However, the study reported these effects were only observed in those that started the study with more visceral fat in the first place.
While the sample size was small consisting only of 124 people, this research suggests that humans could also reap these beneficial effects.
Furthermore, fermented foods have also been linked to a lower amount of visceral fat.
From sauerkraut to kimchi, fermented foods use anaerobic processes during which microorganisms, such as yeast and bacteria, break down food components.
Isa Kujawski, founder and owner of Mea Nutrition, told Eat This Not That: “Some studies have linked an increase in beneficial gut bacteria to a reduction in visceral fat mass.
“Incorporating fermented foods including yoghurt, kefir, kimchi, and sauerkraut may have a positive impact on digestion and a host of other processes that help regular weight and belly fat mass.”