Body Fat, General Health

Body Fat and Health

Did you know that belly fat, or visceral fat as it is medically called, is way more dangerous to your health than being over-all overweight? Traditionally, we might have considered looking at Body Mass Index (BMI) as an indicator of health, but, BMI has a fatal flaw, in that it doesn’t do a great job of showing specifically abdominal obesity. Another big problem with BMI is that it doesn’t take into account how muscular you are.

To give you an idea just how much more dangerous having that spare tire can be, studies have shown that people of normal weight with big bellies were 2.75 times more likely to have a cardiovascular death.

I did an earlier post talking about waist-to-hip ration and that is one fairly reliable method for calculating your ideal body size.

You can go one step simpler in figuring out if you have a weight problem by simply measuring your waist circumference. (Do this by measuring the distance around the smallest area below your rib cage and above your belly button.)

The size of your waist will give you a really good indication of not only how much fat you’re carrying around, but also a general idea of how much risk you have of cardiovascular diseases, insulin sensitivity and the risk of diabetes, and also strokes.

A good rule of thumb is, if you’re a man, 37-40 inches is overweight and more than 40 inches is obese. For the ladies, 31.5-34.6 inches is overweight and more than 34.6 inches is obese.

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