Question

Obesity

How can I measure my waist circumference and waist-to-hip ratio?

A Answers (3)

  • AMichael T. Murray, Naturopathic Medicine, answered

    To determine your waist circumference, locate the upper hip bone and place a measuring tape around the abdomen (ensuring that the tape is horizontal). The tape should be snug but should not compress the skin. If your waist circumference is (for a man) greater than 40 inches or (for a woman) greater than 35 inches, there is no need to do any further calculation, as this measurement alone has been shown to be a major risk factor for both CVD and type 2 diabetes. If your waist circumference is less than these values, you need to determine your waist-to-hip ratio. To do this, measure the circumference of your waist as before and the circumference of your hips at the greatest protrusion of the buttocks. Divide the waist circumference by the hip circumference. A waist-to-hip ratio above 1.0 for men and above 0.8 for women increases the risk of developing CVD, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and gout.

    Measure the circumference of your waist: _____ Measure the circumference of your hips: ____

    Divide the waist measurement by the hip measurement: waist/hip = _____ (this is your waist-to-hip ratio)

  • It’s easy to calculate your waist hip ratio. First, breathe out and measure your waist in inches at its narrowest point. Write down the number. Then measure your hips at the widest point, and write it down. Divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement to get your waist hip ratio. For women, the waist-to-hip score should not exceed 0.80.  For men the score should not exceed 0.95.

    Still, no matter what your BMI or waist-to-hip ratio, don’t lose hope! You can start to make positive changes in the way you eat and exercise today that will let you lose extra weight and lower the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and certain types of cancer.
  • AWeight Watchers® answered
    To measure your waist circumference, locate the upper hip bone and place a tape measure around the waist (ensuring that the tape measure is horizontal) while standing. The tape measure should be snug but should not compress the skin.

    To determine if you have a healthy waist to hip ratio, measure the circumference of your hips at the widest part of your buttocks. Now divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement. For men, a ratio of .90 or less is considered healthy. For women, a ratio of .80 or less is considered healthy. For both genders, a ratio of 1.0 or higher puts you at increased risk for heart disease and other health conditions associated with being overweight.
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What is the waist-to-hip ratio?