Family Matters- USFHP Blog

Health Tip of the Day!

Posted by Rhonda Morris on Jul 17, 2017 1:40:49 PM

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Apples have always been a symbol of good health. Wasn’t it Benjamin Franklin who said, “An apple a day, keeps the doctor away.”? But while apples may be healthy, apple shaped tummies are not. As more and more Americans are becoming “apple-shaped”, US Family Health Plan – a TRICARE Prime Option – wants you to know that rounder bellies can pose a serious problem when it comes to your health.

Over 54% of U.S. adults now have what is termed central obesity or “belly fat,”. Clinically, this is defined as a waistline more than 35 inches in circumference for women and more than 40 inches for men. Since the year 2000, there has been 46% rise in central obesity, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Most Americans are more than 1 inch thicker around the waist than they were 16 years ago. And this is not a good thing.

Belly fat, or visceral fat, is the most dangerous type of fat there is. This fat actually wraps around the organs located in your abdomen and interferes with their ability to function optimally. This sets the stage for all kinds of poor health conditions and even disease states including diabetes, heart disease, stroke and metabolic syndrome.

Take our word for it. You do want to ditch the large waistline. Your body and your wardrobe will thank you for it!

Here are 5 tips on how to drop includes inches around your waist -- fast.


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According to Diabetes Pro Journal people who drink two or more diet sodas a day have a waist-size increases six times greater than those who avoid these diet drinks. Diet soda is loaded with unhealthy artificial sweeteners that trick your metabolism into thinking it’s about to be flooded with sugar. This spikes insulin levels, and shifts the body from a fat-burning to a fat-storing state. Some diet!


A study published in the Diabetes Journal found that unsaturated fat can help reduce abdominal fat (unlike its opposite – saturated animal fat). Where can you fill up on your new best friend, unsaturated fat? Walnuts, of course! Walnut Love.jpgAt about 13 grams per one ounce serving, walnuts are one of the best dietary sources of unsaturated, belly burning, fat there is. Sprinkle a handful into your morning oats, throw it on your, or get a big bowl before you start your Netflix binge. Reap belly-busting benefits.


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and grow a slimmer waistline. Green tea is the natural enemy to weight gain. Sipping green tea throughout the morning can help improve your nerves as you go through the day, as well as your waistline. If you are a coffee drinker, you need to know that unfortunately, coffee has the opposite effect, so think about making a switch. Green tea’s “magical ingredients” are compounds called catechins. When combined with light exercise, the benefits are even better.

A little dash of pepper will do. Black pepper.jpgThat little seasoning, pepper, is one of your very closest buds when it comes to blasting belly fat. Who’d of thunk? Your everyday pepper contains a powerful compound called piperine, which has been used for in Eastern medicine for centuries to treat inflammation and stomach problems. Recent studies have shown that this very same compound – piperine – can help decrease the formation of new fat cells while they fight inflammation. This process is a reaction called adipogenesis. This natural benefit of all of this is a decrease in waist size, body fat, and cholesterol levels. Pass the pepper, please!


Coconut.jpgTried cooking with coconut oil lately? Smells like the tropics, but can do wonders with the waist! The Journal of Pharmacology recently reported that a study of 30 men who used just 2 tablespoons of coconut oil per day, reduced their waist circumference by an average of 1.1 inches in just one month. Coconut oil happens to be vastly superior to other oils and fats when it comes to waist reducing ability. This is because it contains triglycerides (unlike the long-chain fatty acids found in animal sources of saturated fat). Plus, it has a high smoke point, which means it can be used to cook a variety of dishes including eggs to stir-fries. Coconuts!

With these easy, enjoyable and tasty tips, you will be well on your way to a worry free waistline in no time at all. Your clothes will thank you, your loved ones will thank you, and your body will thank you. US Family Health Plan will thank you too, because you will have just taken a major step toward better health.