The distribution of body fat plays a major roll in terms of your metabolic health. Although BMI is helpful, your Body Mass Index (BMI) says nothing about the distribution of fat in your body. It is your waist circumference which provides valuable information with regards to abdominal obesity.
A high waist circumference is associated with an increased risk for heart disease. It also increases your risk for adult onset diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure too. Waist circumference is a more accurate assessment of an individual’s risk than a body mass index (BMI).
Changes in waist circumference over time can indicate an increase or decrease in abdominal fat. Increased abdominal fat increases one’s risk for heart disease and many other ailments. It affects almost every organ system.
How do you measure your waist circumference?
Measure directly against your skin.
Breathe out normally.
Make sure the tape is snug, without compressing the skin.
Measure halfway between your lowest rib and the top of your hipbone, roughly in line with your belly button.
Your waist circumference to be half your height in inches. For example, if you are 5 feet, 10 inches tall, you are 70 inches. Your waist circumference should be 35 inches or less for optimal health. (1/2 your height in inches).
How do I decrease my waist circumference?
You can decrease your waist circumference by eating healthy, participating in aerobic exercise, and losing weight.
The first step to healthy eating is to avoid the processed foods, simple carbohydrates and simple sugars.
The best exercise to reduce waist circumference is a good aerobic workout. Examples include: fast walking, jogging, swimming, cycling, hiking, aerobic class such as kickboxing, jazzercise, etc.
Remember, your BMI should only be one of many tools in your box of health assessments. Your waist circumference is another valuable tool with regards to your overall health and wellness.
What does your waist size say about your health?