What’s the Difference Between Visceral & Subcutaneous Fat

Visceral fat is found deep within the abdominal cavity and wraps around many vital organs, while subcutaneous fat lies just underneath the skin.

Not All Body Fat is the Same

An excess amount of any type of body fat isn’t healthy, but some fat is more dangerous than other fat. Your body has two types of fat—visceral and subcutaneous. This article looks at the differences between these two types of body fat and the best treatment methods for each.

Visceral Fat

Visceral body fat is found deep within the abdominal cavity and wraps around many vital organs. This kind of fat can be seen and measured, but not pinched. Excess visceral fat is generally more likely to lead to serious medical issues than excess subcutaneous fat. These issues include heart disease, Alzheimer’s, type 2 diabetes, stroke, and high cholesterol.1 In women excess visceral fat has been linked to breast cancer and the need for gallbladder surgery.2

Excess visceral fat is generally more likely to lead to serious medical issues than excess subcutaneous fat.

A variety of factors including diet, lifestyle, environment, and genetics can cause our bodies to store excess amounts of visceral fat.

Subcutaneous Fat

Subcutaneous fat, on the other hand, lies just below surface of the skin. Technically it’s really the third layer of skin, after the epidermis and the dermis. A good rule of thumb is if you can pinch body fat with your fingers, it’s subcutaneous.

A good rule of thumb is if you can pinch body fat with your fingers, it’s subcutaneous.

We’re all born with subcutaneous fat which plays a number of vital roles in our health. This kind of fat stores energy, protects our bodies, serves as a passageway for nerves and blood vessels, and more.3 Our genes play an important role is determining how much subcutaneous fat we naturally store, as do factors like diet, lifestyle and environment.

While excess subcutaneous fat is generally less dangerous than excess visceral fat, an excess of either type can lead to many similar conditions.

Releasing Excess Fat

Addressing extra subcutaneous fat and visceral fat both start the same way—with a focus on nutrition, exercise, and related lifestyle factors.

Holistic Weight Loss Pyramid

The weight loss pyramid with diet and lifestyle at the foundation

12-Week Weight Loss Program

Our Awakening 12-Week weight loss program is our best and most popular program for patients with excess amounts of visceral fat to release. In this supervised medical weight loss program our doctors and providers work side-by-side with patients for three months to uncover, understand, and address the causes of weight gain. The program includes a complete nutrition plan, weekly visits, off-hours support, supplements, medication, lifestyle coaching, and more. Most patients release 35-40 pounds during this 12-Week program. Patients with large amounts of visceral fat to release may chose to complete multiple rounds of the program until they’ve reached their goal weight.

Green Laser Body Sculpting

For patients with excess amounts of stubborn subcutaneous body fat, our Formnovélle™ green laser therapy is the answer. This FDA-approved fat loss and body sculpting technology opens up microscopic pores in fat cells to release excess fatty acids. Many patients see 6 inches of fat reduction in 4 weeks. Some patients see as much as 1.5 inches of fat reduction in their first 45-minute treatment.

Total Body Transformation

Our popular Total Body Transformation package combines our award-winning Awakening weight loss program with our exclusive Formnovélle green laser treatments. Patients with excess amounts of both types of body fat to release chose this package to receive significant combined cost savings.

Arrange your complimentary consultation to discuss your weight loss and wellness goals with our team.

Sources

  1. What is Visceral Fat?, WebMD
  2. Abdominal fat and what to do about it, Harvard Health
  3. What Is Subcutaneous Fat?, Healthline