Using waist size to measure your risk for various health complications

A study by the University of Iowa has found that waist size is a more accurate way of assessing whether you are at risk for a range of health problems, than body mass index (BMI).

Marking the end of National Obesity Week, Refiloe Mpakanyane raises this finding with Dr Riekie Smit, founder of the Aesthetic and Anti-aging Medicine Society of South Africa.

RELATED: Cardiologist warns of conditions and diseases linked to obesity

Dr Smit notes that BMI is still a comparatively accurate measure, but doesn't take into account certain factors like whether the subject has a very high muscle mass.

The complications a high waist circumference could point to include risk for diabetes, hypertension, heart problems, brain-related conditions like early dementia, and infertility.

There is a very high risk of infertility in both men and women if your waist circumference becomes very high.

Dr Riekie Smit, Founder - Aesthetic and Anti-aging Medicine Society of South Africa

The waist measurement that indicates a risk for women is over 80 cm, and for men, more than 94 cm.

Indicating a high risk would be above 88 cm for women and 102 cm for men.

Listen to the detailed instructions for correctly measuring your waist circumference below:


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