How Does Your Waist Size Determine Your Health?

What would it be like if someone starts measuring your waist to determine your health status? That sure is going to happen soon. The waist is a part of the body that divides the body into two sections, and is slightly narrower than the hips. When you keep your thumb at the lowest rib and your index finger on your hip girdle, the area in between that makes the waist. It is a soft and fleshy part of your upper torso and ideally is the narrowest part of it.


To correctly measure the waist, you should roll up your clothing so that measuring tape is in direct contact with your skin. Exhale while taking the measurement. The tape should fit tightly around your waist but shouldn't dig in.


Ideally, your waist size should be no more than half of your height. So, for example, your height is 5' 9'' then your waist circumference should be no more than 34.5 inches. A waist circumference greater than that puts you at a risk of various health issues such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension, and metabolic syndrome.


Those with a larger waist circumference as compared to the hip circumference are at a risk of various cardiovascular disorders. A study was done using 650,000 participants in which their waist circumference was compared.


It revealed that women with a waist circumference higher than 37.5 inches are at a higher risk of early death by 80°54: than those whose waist circumference is lower than 37.5 inches.

Various studies have shown that when a woman's waist circumference crosses 31.5 inches, the risk of diabetes mellitus, high serum cholesterol, and hypertension is elevated while reaching 35 inches spikes the chances of these lifestyle disorders. The same is when a man's waist size crosses 37 inches.


There has been a lot of debate whether to consider BlVll as a health risk indicator or waist circumference. While BMI only talks about at what percentage of health risk a person is at, the waist circumference tells what exact health disorders the person will face in future. it depends upon how fat is distributed within the body.


A study released back in 2008 in The Journal of Clinical Epidemiology revealed that BMI is a poor indicator of cardiovascular risks. It would be difficult to believe but in Japan, the government limits waist sizes for both men and women. The limits are - 33.5 inches for men and 35.4 inches for women. And those with a waist circumference larger than this are given dieting guidance and kept under strict supervision.


Controlling the waist circumference has thus, become a necessity as our lifestyle becomes more stationary. There's no easy way out of it. Drinking 6 cups of green tea and then eating large fries isn't going to work. if you've chosen a healthy lifestyle, stick to it.


Waist training is another controversial method of losing waist fat. There have been instances where its obsession has led to death and bouts of an eating disorder. It is, therefore, important to get yourself educated about the right ways to not only reduce the waist size but also bring about fat loss and maintain optimum health.


When you start with the exercise you must remember that since a majority of it is fat, the scale might not show a significant difference but the measuring tape will definitely show a greater loss.


A combination of cardio and strength training will help you shrink your waist size. Cardio helps in using up the fat stored in the adipose tissues of the abdomen while lifting weights and doing some squats will strengthen the core muscles. Both of these exercises should be done simultaneously.

Doing cardio and ignoring strength training will leave you with stretch marks, saggy skin, and weak core muscles. If you concentrate only on strength training, the core muscles will strengthen and lock in the fat which will make it difficult for it to escape. Start your exercise routine with cardio and end it with strength training for best results.



An analysis published in the Journal of Obesity revealed that high-intensity interval training is the most effective in reducing the waist size.


In HllT, bouts of high and short intensity exercises are alternated with low-intensity exercises with a rest of no more than 15 seconds between two exercises.

A few cardio exercises that help in reducing the waist circumference are - running, elliptical, stair stepper, circuit training, and jumping rope. Most effective strength training includes lunge twists, squats with weights, Russian twist and plank.


Crunches do not burn abdominal fat in any way. They do strengthen the core muscles but aren't that effective in doing that either.



What you eat does make a huge difference too. Eating red meats, high salt and sugar foods will only increase your waist circumference.


Life is precious. Keep yourself fit by keeping your waist size in control.