People with extra weight on their bodies accumulate fat in different places.
‘Apples’ have more fat around their waist.
‘Pears’ have heavy bottoms and hips.
Both shapes may pose different—often serious—health risks.
Although the mirror will tell you what shape you are, here’s a concrete way to find out:
Measure around the narrowest part of your waist to determine your waist circumference. Then measure around your hips — about three or four inches below your pelvic bone. Divide your waist circumference by your hip measurement to get your waist-to-hip ratio (WHR). A WHR higher than 0.80 means you are apple-shaped. A ratio under 0.8 means you’re pear-shaped.
A thicker waist means your fat is distributed around the stomach and chest. This increases your risk of getting a heart attack substantially, and makes you prone to breast cancer. Studies have indicated that there might be a link between waist-thickness and infertility. For men, a waist measuring 80 cm and more, and for women, a waist thicker than 85 cm or more, makes you an apple shape. So, apple shapes should look to trim that circumference.
Abdominal obesity increases insulin levels in the system, putting you at a higher risk of diabetes. It can also cause ‘mechanical’ problems such as arthritis and spider veins. However, excess fat in the abdominal area could actually provide a layer of protection.
While neither apple nor pear shape is good for health, it is definitely more dangerous to be carrying extra fat around the waist. So, take steps to trim that circumference. The thinner the waistline, the longer your lifeline!