Belly fat or put more colloquially love handles can be a real pain in the neck in terms of weight loss. A report by scientists at John Hopkins Medicine has shown that getting rid of belly fat in any manner possible may help in improving blood vessel function.
In this 6-month study, as the overweight subjects lost more belly fat, their arteries became more flexible, thereby enhancing blood circulation. Another finding is that a low-carb diet could be more effective in weight loss than a low-fat diet.
Lead investigator Kerry J. Stewart, Ed.D., a professor of medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and director of clinical and research exercise physiology at the Johns Hopkins Heart and Vascular Institute, commented, “After six months, those who were on the low-carb diet lost an average of 28.9 pounds versus 18.7 pounds among those on the low-fat diet.”
About 60 men and women who weighed almost 215 pounds were included in the study. While half of them were exposed to a low-carb diet, the others consumed a low-fat diet. Their blood circulation was gauged by means of a blood flow test.
Importantly, belly fat lost irrespective of a low-fat or low-carb diet appeared to play an important role in improving the working of blood vessels. Another point to note is that a high-carb diet may disturb a potential weight loss initiative as it reduces the rate of fat loss.
The analysis was presented at the American Heart Association scientific meeting in San Diego on March 13.