Being in good health means maintaining a healthy weight and doing what you can to prevent certain types of diseases such as diabetes and heart disease. But did you know that your body shape can also be an indication of whether or not you’re healthy? For example, if your waist size is larger than it should be than it means you may have an apple-shaped body or a pear-shaped body – both of which may also mean your BMI might be too high. People who have apple shaped or pear shaped bodies may be at a higher risk for chronic health conditions including high blood pressure and other potential cardiovascular issues.
Although it is true that heredity plays a role in our health and body shape, we also have the ability to improve upon what we’ve been dealt. For example, if you have a family history of high cholesterol and diabetes you may be more at risk than someone who doesn’t have that history. However, what you can do is use diet and exercise as well as arm yourself with knowledge regarding how to decrease the potential for those conditions. Avoid eating foods that contribute to cholesterol issues. Adopt a heart healthy diet. Decrease your dependence on red meat. Eat more fish, leafy greens, and whole grains.
One of the indicators of being overweight and therefore having a higher likelihood of developing certain unhealthy conditions is the measurement of the waist to hip ratio (WHR). Measurements should be taken at the hips and the smallest part of the waist. If WHR is above .85 for females or above .90 for males, your doctor might tell you that you need to make some changes. Those numbers, along with the body mass index (BMI) of 30 and above are indicators of whether or not a person is overweight.
To reduce your risk of stroke, heart attack, arthritis, and diabetes, do yourself a favor and get active. You have the ability to change unhealthy habits and lead a healthier lifestyle. By doing so you’ll probably notice higher levels of energy as well as an overall better mood. And that will help you keep moving in the right direction.