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It's not the fat you can see that's the biggest risk for your health, says Dr Kirsten Hairston

by , 03 June 2014

When you look in the mirror and see bulges of fat in places you wish were less bulgy, you're usually more inclined to do something about it. You'll go on a diet or increase the amount of exercise you do so you can metabolise more fat.

But have you ever stood in front of the mirror and thought about trying to lose the fat you can't see?

We thought not!

And it's a mistake many people make that leads to heart problems and other health issues, says Dr Hairston of Wake Forest School of Medicine.

Read on to find out what this “hidden” fat does to your health…

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Hidden fat can be the reason you develop heart problems

The hidden fat we’re taking about it visceral fat.
 
This is the fat that accumulates around your organs. And while they need a certain amount to provide protection and cushioning, too much prevents them from doing their job properly.
 
This is especially true for your heart. Too much fat puts pressure on your heart preventing it from beating properly.
 
So how do you know whether your organs are suffocating in fat?
 
You could go for an MRI, but there’s a simple way you can make the assumption from the comfort of your own home.

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Grab a tape measure to determine your risk of fat related heart problems

It’s all in the measurement of your waist.
 
Grab a tape measure and wrap it around your belly at the level of your belly button. Make sure it’s flat against your skin and you’re not pulling it too tight.
 
Women shouldn’t have a waist measurement bigger than 90cm and men no bigger than 102cm. If you do, your risk of heart problems shoots up.
 
Measure your risk of heart problems today and look out for our next article, which will provide tips on how to lower your risk!

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