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What Your Waist Says About Your Health

What Your Waist Says About Your Health

The Ziggy cartoonist Tom Wilson once wrote: “A waist is a terrible thing to mind.” And boy was he right: But if you’ve lost your waist and really want to get it back, you won’t mind doing the work. You’ll be wasting belly fat and reclaiming a younger RealAge! That’s why, despite the challenge, it’s something to embrace—and then you’ll be more easily embraced, too!

We’ve long warned about the dangers of having a waist circumference over 40 inches for men and 35 inches for women: It puts you at risk for metabolic syndrome (high blood pressure, triglycerides and glucose levels; insulin resistance; body-wide-inflammation; and stroke risk). Well, now, a study presents evidence that for you folks with type 2 diabetes, abominable abdominal fat or having an apple-shaped body, is a bigger indicator of heart woes to come, especially left ventricle dysfunction, than your weight or BMI.

So if you have major love handles, a bulging belly or both, here are four ways to banish the bulge.

  1. Walk 30 minutes a day heading for a total of 10,000 steps. Make a pedometer your constant companion.
  2. Eat 5-9 servings of fruits and veggies daily and nothing but 100 percent whole grains. Ditch processed foods, trans and sat fats, added sugars and syrups.
  3. Opt for healthy, anti-inflammatory fats found in salmon, sea trout and omega-3 DHA supplements from algae.
  4. Keep blood sugar levels steady to stop weight-and-fat-boosting insulin spikes by eating 5 times (3 small meals and 2 healthy snacks) every day. 

Medically reviewed in February 2019.

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