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Published: January, 2009; Vol 5, Num 8

 

Assess Your Health

Waist-to-Hip Ratio

Men: To measure your waist, position the soft tape so that the “zero” is at your navel. Wrap the tape around your body horizontally until it meets again with your navel. To measure your hip, find the top of your hip bone in a similar manner and measure horizontally around your torso. Divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement. A healthy weight is at or below 1.0.

Women: To measure your waist, position the soft tape so that the “zero” is below navel between the rib cage and the hip bone. Wrap the tape around your torso horizontally. To measure your hip, the tape measure should horizontally surround the widest area between your hip bone and your buttocks. Divide your waist measurement by your hip measurement. A healthy weight is at or below 0.8.

BMI

Another way to assess your health is finding your body mass index (BMI).  Use the chart below. Comparing your height and weight provides a good indicator of how much fat you carry. You are considered to be normal weight for your height if your BMI is between 18.5 and 24.8 (dark green). If you are between 25 and 29.9, you are overweight. Obesity (red) is 30 or higher. 

For related stories on your health, see It's a New Year and a New You -- Resolutions to Manage Your Diabetes and  HHS Debuts New Exercise Guidelines in this issue of LIFELINES.