Understanding the Phenomenon Known as “Skinny Fat”

We equate being skinny with being healthy. We think the person who can seemingly eat whatever they want and as much as they want is the luckiest person ever. We assume that just because someone isn’t overweight and can eat anything they like that they must be healthy.

Not so, and here’s why.

Weight is just a clue, an indicator, not an affirmation of superb health. If only life were so simple! But, the best we can assume is that a thin person is more likely healthy. Overall health is determined by countless factors.

Guess what! Chips and chili cheese fries are bad for EVERYONE! The health playing fields is flat. A thin person can be at risk for heart disease just as easily as the obese person. And, conversely, a person who is overweight could be perfectly fit and healthy.

The scariest possibility for anyone consuming copious amounts of unhealthy foods is the build-up of visceral fat.

Visceral fat is fat that hides between our organs. Hidden fat limits the ability for the liver, kidneys and heart to function properly. Visceral Fat a sneaky culprit leading to a barrage of unwanted health complications and diseases.

Another eye-opening fact about fat is that it’s a living tissue capable of producing and releasing hormones that affect your organs. Fat wants to thrive. Don’t let it. If you do, you are putting yourself at an unnecessary risk. You increase your risk of heart disease, developing Type II Diabetes and stroke. It can even affect your mental health: Depression, dementia and mood and sleep disorders.

Nervous yet?

If you are a person who has spent your life relishing in the fact that you can eat to your heart’s delight and never gain an ounce, take note. The time is here for you rethink your habits and work to avoid the onslaught of problems that may end up occurring.

The only surefire way to know if the dangerous visceral fat is lurking in your body, is to conduct an expensive CT scan. Not feasible for most. But, you know what your habits are. Why not be better safe than sorry and begin to implement changes to your health and wellness.

The solution is simple: Healthy eating and regular exercise. Simple, but not so easy. The first step is to get yourself mentally prepared. Start planning meal and exercise routines.

  • Cut down on processed foods and lessen your intake of super sugary snacks and drinks. Add more fruits and vegetables to your meal. One great tip is to employ "My Plate" (the new food pyramid). My Plate guides you to better portion control: 20% protein (meat), 40% vegetables, 30% whole grains and 10% fruits.


  • Find what exercises you like. You don’t have to suddenly be a marathon runner or a yogi. If you find something you enjoy doing you are more likely to stick to it. Weight training should also be a part of this plan. Lean muscle helps burn fat.


  • You are not alone if you don’t want to be. Talk to your health care provider, find support groups in your area or contact the experts at the Rochester Holistic Center. A lifestyle overhaul is no easy feat. It takes patience, discipline and hard work. Take time to consider the dice you are throwing if you don’t get a handle on your own well-being. All your new determination will most likely be worth the effort.