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One simple diet change that could melt belly fat

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2013-03-31 10:46

If you are using vegetable oil for cooking or dressings consider switching to canola oil that Penn State researchers found could lower diabetes and heart risks by reducing belly fat.

Fat that accumulates around the waist and in the belly is considered more dangerous for poor health. Hormones are secreted in belly fat that are different than what goes on in fat that accumulates in the thighs or buttocks.

The right oils in the diet keep us metabolically healthy

American and Canadian researchers teamed up to study the benefits of canola oil; compared to other oil blends.

Penny Kris-Etherton, Distinguished Professor of Nutrition, Penn State said in a press release that monounsaturated fats in the oil appear to lower the risk of metabolic syndrome that can lead to chronic illness. The chance of metabolic syndrome increases with age and higher body mass index.

About metabolic syndrome

The National Institutes of Health lists extra weight in the upper or middle body, or central obesity, as one of the biggest risk factors for metabolic syndrome. The second biggest risk is insulin resistance, or inability of the body to effectively use the hormone insulin to control blood sugar levels.

Metabolic syndrome includes the following. If you have 3 or more of conditions, you are at higher risk for heart disease, diabetes and stroke:

• Waist circumference 40 inches or more for men and 35 inches or more for women
• Low ‘good’ or HDL cholesterol (for men, under 40 mg/dL and women under 50 mg/dL)
• Triglycerides higher than 150 mg/dL
• Blood pressure equal to 130/85 or higher
• Fasting blood sugar 100 mg/dL or above

The good news is you can control you risk factors for metabolic syndrome that leads to disease with exercise, changing your diet and weight loss. The new study shows switching from other oils to canola oil could help improve your health.

The study

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Researchers studied the oil because it contains high levels of monounsaturated fat that differs from saturated fat found in meats and dairy products such as milk, butter and cheese.

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