BLACK VOICES
01/18/2013 10:17 am ET

Dr. Ian Smith, 'Shred' Author: Belly Pooch Has Broken Many A Man's Heart (VIDEO)

As if it isn't tricky enough trying to navigate the dating scene, health expert and author of Shred: The Revolutionary Diet, Dr. Ian Smith, says there's one other thing to keep in mind.

"I looked at surveys of assets that guys liked and didn't like, and one of the things that guys complained about a lot was the [belly] pooch," Smith told HuffPost Live host Nancy Redd in an interview Wednesday.

Smith, who offered the insight in his previous book, The Truth About Men, prefaced his advice by saying that he isn't a relationship expert and later agreed that, for him, belly pooch isn't an attractive trait.

Perhaps the men surveyed in Smith's data weren't as stressed as those in a study out of the UK last year. According to a study published in PLoS ONE, men under stress gravitated toward heavier, full-figured women over thinner women. Tense men also preferred a wider range of female body sizes than their stress-free counterparts, Men's Health magazine reports.

But aesthetic preferences aside, research has consistently shown that belly fat is a cause for concern, including links to Type 2 diabetes and heart disease, and even early death.

Even being a normal weight but having excessive belly fat has proven to be worse health-wise than just being qualified as obese.

And the danger lurks for men and women alike. In November, Harvard researchers found an association between higher amounts of belly fat and decreased bone strength in men, a risk factor for osteoporosis.

Check out Dr. Ian's thoughts on the pooch in the video above and some tips on reducing belly fat in the slideshow below.

Lose Belly Fat Fast With These Ab Exercises

PHOTO GALLERIES
The Best Ab Exercises Of All Time
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