Fat that accumulates around the abdomen increases the risk of cardiovascular disease, metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes. Doctors recommend that people who are heavier in the midsection, reduce this area with diet and exercise.
According to a study that appeared in Diabetes Care, a journal published by the American Diabetes Association, a diet rich in monounsaturated fats (MUFA) may help reduce abdominal fat better than a carbohydrate rich diet.
When test subjects ate a carbohydrate enriched diet, they tended to accumulate fat in the abdomen. When they ate a diet that had more MUFA, abdominal fat concentration decreased, even without exercise.
What are some foods that are MUFA rich?
- Olives and olive oil
- Canola oil
- Nuts and nut oils (peanut, walnut)
- Seeds and seed oils (sesame, flaxseed)
- Grape seed oil
- Soybean oil
It's important to remember that a MUFA rich diet should still be a calorie-controlled diet. The USDA recommends an approximate 2,000 calorie a day diet to maintain a healthy weight, depending on age, gender and activity level.
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