Your Waist Size Can Determine Your Risk for Death

The HealthGal Health Guide November 13, 2008
  • Ahh...the many definitions of obesity.  The scale can tell you that you are carrying too many pounds BUT there are some people who are average weight and have "obese organs," meaning large fat deposits in or around their organs.  You can't see it - but it's there.  Or you can begin to develop health issues like diabetes that may have to do with "obese habits," even if you are only carrying some extra weight.  In the last couple of years - we said BMI - body mass index - is a good way to assess "obesity or being overweight" in relation to risk for disease.  Well, experts now say that "abdominal obesity" meaning those people with the apple shape - carrying excess weight specifically in their abdomen - are seriously at risk for earlier or premature death.

     

    So that means your waist size - truly is a "quick determination" to help your doctor - and even you - assess your risk for death.  What are the cut offs for measurements?

    • Men should have a waist measurement below 40 inches
    • Women should have a waist measurement below 35 inches

    The new data appears in The New England Journal of Medicine and it suggests that in addition to BMI, doctors need to routinely take  waist measurement, when assessing risk of death in patients. 

     

    If you carry your weight in your abdomen or if you are an apple or if recent weight gain localized to your waist area - you need to heed this warning.  That specific fat not only "feeds diabetes and heart disease" but it also hastens death, statistically.