Healthy Diet Plan - Special Report on the Health Risks of an ExpandingWaist

Are you following a healthy diet plan? The simplest way to check yourself is to measure your waist size or the ratio of your waist to hip measurements.
 Circumference measurements in different places on your body will give you feedback about how well your diet and exercise regime are working. (You can get a body fat analysis done and buy a healthy diet plan book, but the waist is as good an indicator as any if you're looking at your weight for the first time.)

So measure yourself regularly - although you may think you have a healthy diet plan and be at an ideal weight 'by the books' - the stomach area is a REALLY good test site ...

You may need to work a little harder if the goal is to improve those abdominal, get a flat tummy by losing belly fat. You can see if certain places are lagging behind others in toning up, or in the case of waist and hips, if you’re gaining body fat.

Stomach fat and an expanding middle in men and women is actually a REALLY good way to check how overweight a person is. It's also a bit of a giveaway in terms of whether a healthy diet plan is being followed.

This is because as the % body fat increases, the waist size increases. Usually it's the first place you gain and the last place you lose.

Waist circumference is a pretty accurate measure of whether you're overdoing it. It also gives us an early warning of possible future health problems. Because what matters is where you carry your excess fat.

The waist is a key measurement for weight loss - more so than weight! - because when your waist size is going down, you know your overall body fat is going down. (If you follow a poor weight loss program - see quick weight loss and crash diet pages - you may be losing lean muscle tissue or water as well. That's not a healthy diet plan.)

If you lose fat around your middle, you may notice it even without measuring, because if your waist goes in even a little bit, your trousers get looser! Your waist can completely change the way you look – even if you don’t gain any muscle.

Of course, people do have different distribution of fat around certain parts of the body. This can affect the look between different people. You know if you're an apple or a pear!

For example, if one woman managed to reduce her fat percentage to 20%, yet had a high amount of stomach fat, then she may not look as slim as her friend who has 25% body fat but a more even distribution of fat over the body - heard the expression "hides it well" or "look ok in clothes, but bit squidgey in a bikini". The result is she would have to work harder and reduce body fat percentage even further if she wanted to look leaner than her friend around the belly.

So what are the take home messages here?

Waist size a REALLY good indication of how far off a healthy diet plan you actually are because it relates very well to your percentage body fat and reflects quickly that you are overeating or eating refined or processed foods that are more readily stored as fat.

People who are an apple shape - they store fat around their midriff - are far more likely to develop heart disease and diabetes than those who are a pear shape or more diffusely plump.

man showing big hairy belly So, as I covered in Ideal Weight ... abdominal fat and a large waist measurement is a real indicator of certain health risks, which can lead to cardiac failure, liver disease and so forth.

As a health guideline, a waist circumference greater than 80cm (32in) for women and 94cm (37in) for men indicates increased risk, while a measurement of more than 88cm (35in) for women and 102cm (40in) for men is particularly worrying.

An even better measurement of health risks of an expanding waistline could actually be the ratio of your waist (the narrowest point on your abdomen) to your hip (the widest point.)

A ratio of more than 1.0 for a man (in other words your waist is bigger than your hips) or 0.8 for a woman means you urgently need to reduce your weight and increase your levels of exercise.

So ... the next thing you'll be asking (hopefully ...) is how to lose stomach fat?
orange key guide The answer lies in a healthy diet plan!

Don't worry, it doesn't have to be boring - but it may mean making some subtle and not-so-subtle changes to your lifestyle and eating habits.

Are you ready to swap glut for fit? then READ Healthy Eating Guidelines Tips on Lifetime Fitness (coming soon!)

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