Here’s How to Measure Belly Fat
Measuring belly fat starts by wrapping a tape measure around your waist at the point that is just above your hipbone. For many people this is also where their belly button is located.
When you measure belly fat, or any fat for that matter, be sure not to pull the tape tight. You want it to be snug, but not pressing into your skin. Also exhale just before taking your measurement, so that you are not holding in your stomach. Holding in your stomach, pulling the tape too tight, etc. are all little “tricks” people use to make their initial measurement smaller, but they are only kidding themselves?
Yes, their initial number will be smaller, but they won’t see as much of a loss on the tape when the belly fat starts coming off. Get a true measurement in the beginning and then enjoy seeing the measurement shrink instead of lying to yourself in the beginning with a false number. A healthy waist measurement for women is 35 or less; 40 or less for men.
Measure Belly Fat But Don’t Forget Your Butt
Because of body composition, people store body fat in different areas, so to get an even more accurate picture, also take your hip measurement. The measurement is taken using the same “rules” however, have the tape around the widest part of your buttocks instead of your waist.
Once you have those two numbers, divide your waist number by your hip number to get your waist-to-hip ratio. A healthy ratio is 0.8 or less for women and 0.95 or less for men.
The Effects of an Excessive Belly Fat Measurement
So why are we concerned about our waist circumference or the above ratio? Excessive belly fat, called visceral fat, is worse than fat located in other areas as it can lead to many serious diseases, such as heart disease, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, Type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance and liver disease, just to name a few. People with a high waist-to-hip ratio are particularly susceptible to diabetes and heart disease.
Visceral fat settles deep in the abdominal cavity taking up the spaces between internal organs. However once you start burning off fat, it is also one of the first places you will see results.
How to Reduce Your Belly Fat Measurement
Healthy eating and exercise are the best ways to get rid of body fat and to keep from gaining it back. Some of the fat you lose will be from the belly area. Your diet should consist of fresh fruits, vegetables and whole grains, all of which are high in fiber, but low in fat and carbohydrates, especially simple carbohydrates such as sugar.
Exercise should focus on cardio as those are the preferred routines that burn the most calories for the time invested. Start out at a moderate or even low intensity; as you get more fit, ramp up the intensity.
It is never too late to start and anything you can do to become healthier is better than what you were doing before. Invest in your health by reducing your belly fat measurement!
You can find more “Belly Fat Success Tips” in our weight loss category found at http://myfitnessnut.com and while you’re they, be sure to subscribe to our monthly fitness newsletter and be kept up to date on the latest developments in the world of health and fitness.