I knew that pic would get your attention….After 12 years of research, the first definitive study into the most effective way to ward off and lose belly fat has been conducted.
Belly fat is a symptom of today’s modern lifestyle. Australians now rank in the top five fattest nations on earth and have the second-highest rate of childhood obesity.
While the human body is programmed to store fat, the places it stores fat have different effects on people’s health. Visceral or belly fat clusters around internal organs and has been found to contribute to the development of diabetes and cardiovascular and inflammatory diseases.
Dr. Boutcher’s research conducted at the University of New South Wales has found that an interval sprint training program, combined with a healthy Mediterranean eating plan, is the most effective way to reduce this dangerous visceral fat.
12-week study where interval sprinting was performed three times a week for 20 minutes each session (or 1 hour a week in total), women lost 9% of total body fat (2.5kg) and experienced a 6% decrease in central abdominal fat. Meanwhile, men lost 9% of total body fat (2kg), 17% of belly fat, and 5% of subcutaneous abdominal fat.
To achieve a similar decrease in visceral fat under a conventional aerobic exercise regime, participants would need to train for 60 minutes, five days a week for 14 weeks. In addition, conventional aerobic exercise does not increase muscle mass, whereas interval sprinting does. Great news for those short on time!
There are possible reasons why interval sprinting lead to belly fat loss.
Increased fat burning – our fat stores are depleted and our bodies are forced to draw fat stores from other areas of the body
Increases muscle mass = higher metabolism
Decreased appetite – I know how much my appetite is suppressed after a hard workout!
The study also revealed:
- Women lost 9% of visceral fat after 12 hours of interval sprinting
- Men increased torso and leg muscle by a significant 1.2kg after 12 hours of interval sprinting
- Drinking green tea before interval training burns 20% more fat
In his book 20 x 3 Dr. Boutcher talks about how resistance exercises don’t seem to work in decreasing belly fat and how people with high amounts of daily stress and lack sleep tend to have higher levels of cortisol in their blood which in turn is a reaction for our bodies to go into survival mode and cling onto fat stores. There are also examples of interval training sessions.
This book is an interesting read and I guess it is nice to know that research now proves what we all thought about interval training and it’s benefits!
Note: this book was gifted for review purposes