Fat in the abdominal region and its influence on lung capacity: implications for respiratory health.

Excess abdominal fat, especially visceral fat, can affect respiratory health and lung capacity in various ways:

Mechanical Effects: Excess belly fat might impinge on the diaphragm and chest wall, limiting lung expansion during inhalation. 

Obesity hypoventilation syndrome (OHS) and obesity-related restrictive lung disease are linked to obesity, especially central or abdominal obesity. 

Poor Respiratory Muscle Strength: Excess abdominal fat weakens the diaphragm and intercostal muscles, lowering breathing force. 

Abdominal obesity increases the risk of respiratory diseases such OSA, asthma, and COPD. OSA, in particular, is significantly connected to obesity and causes recurrent upper airway blockage during sleep, disrupting breathing and oxygenation.

Pro-inflammatory cytokines and adipokines from metabolically active belly fat can cause systemic inflammation, respiratory inflammation, and airway hyperresponsiveness. 

Mechanical effects on lung expansion, decreased respiratory muscle strength, higher risk of respiratory diseases, systemic inflammation, impaired lung function tests, and reduced exercise tolerance are connected with abdominal obesity. 

Maintaining respiratory health and lung function requires managing abdominal obesity through lifestyle changes such regular exercise, a balanced diet, weight loss, and smoking cessation. 

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