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Tell me your waist-hip ratio- shocked.

(102 Posts)
waistnhips Thu 08-Nov-12 07:58:58

I've always considered myself slim as my BMI is 19.4, and I'm a size 10. But was doing some calculations yesterday and found my shape puts me inthe apple category- and at risk of heart disease, diabetes etc.

I've been battling with a few inches round my waist for some time - used to be 24 inches when i was 21, now a whopping 29. My hips are 35-35 so this makes my ratio 0.82 (Divide waist by hips.)

Evidently anything over 8 is the shock danger zone, and 0.75 is the Marilyn Monroe desirable figure.

I am now trying to lose 3-4 lbs that will take me back to where I ought to be.

Caerlaverock Thu 08-Nov-12 08:00:42

I think it is nonsense. I don't have a waist never have never will. If you are a fit and healthy size 10 don't fret.

waistnhips Thu 08-Nov-12 08:09:57

I'm sorry but it's not nonsense, This was on a site by Dr Marliyn Glenville who is a respected nutritionist. Fat stored around the middle is an indicator of internal fat around the major organs- which is very dangerous. This is well known and there was once a TV programme showing a guy who was pretty slim ( tiny belly) but when looked at with Mri imaging etc he was at risk because his arteries were pretty furred up.

AntoinetteCosway Thu 08-Nov-12 08:13:14

Mine's 0.77. Waist 27, Hips 35. (5'5", size 8, 8st 11lbs for full disclosure!)

I'm not sure I really get it hip/waist ratio has always been ok, even when I was a lot bigger. (Used to be almost 14st and a size 18.) Surely being obese but with a healthy hip/waist ratio doesn't make sense? And yet that's what I had...

waistnhips Thu 08-Nov-12 08:27:55

More and more is being discovered about where fat is stored. It's much healtheir to be a pear shape ( women)- this has been known for quite some time. Fat on the hips, bum and thighs is healthier fat than that around the wasit. So yes, being obese is not good news anyway, but slim people with fat tunmmies are at risk just as much.

I know that if I lost 3-4 lbs then I;d get my ratio down to yours which is what I need to do- because my waist is bigger than it's ever been and several pairs of trousers don't fit now , when they did 4 years ago.

AntoinetteCosway Thu 08-Nov-12 08:50:35

That's interesting. I think I'm lucky as I'm an hourglass (35-27-35) and am when heavier too, though when I look at my mum she has teeny little legs and an enormous stomach, and used to be very I'm worried that when the middle-aged-flab hits that's where it'll go!

SorrelForbes Thu 08-Nov-12 08:55:42

Mine is just under I think. 29" waist and 42" hips! Definitely not an apple. As a poster up thread notes, my mother was very thin, straight up and down with slim thighs, small bust, etc. As she went past her 40s all her weight went on to her stomach. Mine seems to be going on everywhere more equally grin

ceeveebee Thu 08-Nov-12 09:00:49

I am Sorells body double, I am also 29" waist and 42" hips. Which makes us both 0.7 I think so very healthy. But most trousers and jeans that fit around the hips are too loose at the waist I find

SorrelForbes Thu 08-Nov-12 09:01:47

Oh yes, I have much gaping. Very tedious.

gymboywalton Thu 08-Nov-12 09:01:56

you know anyone can call themselves a nutrtionist? i am telling you this-that makes me a nutrtionist!

marilyn glenville is a psychologist.

if you want to take advice from someone about food you need a dietician-a properly qualified dietician.

winnybella Thu 08-Nov-12 09:09:02

Mine's 0.74, but tbh I'm not sure it really works like that. I'm very small boned so my ratio seems to be ok, BUT I have lots of fat on my stomach (and hips as well)- you can easily grab a handful. OTOH I am rather slim (size 8-10, 5'8").

So perhaps instead of ratio it's better to focus on getting rid of fat, as some people will have wide waists (and so undesirable waist-hips ratio) no matter what.

waistnhips Thu 08-Nov-12 09:12:25

Gym I agree with you- 100% about her qualifications but if you look at her website she is a member of the Royal College of Medicine though I expect her PhD is in a humanities subject not dietetics- will investigate.

Netguru Thu 08-Nov-12 09:18:12

Thing is what if you have a normal stomach (I don't) but small hips. Mine are 31 inches, I fit men's jeans and can't have babies easily (five day assisted labour then c section. .

lljkk Thu 08-Nov-12 09:18:35

0.76. Also struggle with gaping trouser problem. angry Pretty obvious we are becoming an unusual shape. sad

EdsRedeemingQualities Thu 08-Nov-12 09:25:09

I wouldn't get too caught up in what someone no one much has heard of on the internet tells you.

Everyone is different. There are people your shape and size who have absolutely no health issues and people who probably do.

It's not just about one thing, one ratio, one proportional calculation.

and as for your 'whopping' 29" waist...forgive me while I don't know what to say!!! smile

(I have no idea what my ratio is, I'm 7m pregnant)(and I'm not toooo worried about it)

ManifestingMingeHooHoosAgain Thu 08-Nov-12 09:25:15

There is some truth in the notion of storing lots of fat around the tummy can be unhealthy. I am not massively overweight but very apple shaped. My diet is pretty shit TBH.

However, losing 3-4 pounds making you go from higher risk to lower risk is nonsense.

I have a big belly and smallish hips, I daren't work out my ratio. But I am fairly sure I am high risk for developing diabetes etc in the future.

The main issue is not the visible external fat, but the fat stored around your organs. There's some decent quality info here with links.

And totally agree that 'nutritionist' is a useless title that means nothing. 'Dr' Gillan McKeith is/was a nutritionist. I would refer you to Ben Goldacre for the details on that grin

helpyourself Thu 08-Nov-12 09:30:00

Fat stored around the middle is an indicator of internal fat around the major organs
is true, but if you're like any --40+ mother of 3 --me my waist is big because it's flabby rather than fat. There's no fat there, it's just that the abdominal muscles are weak!

shine0ncrazydiamond Thu 08-Nov-12 09:30:21

Well, my waist is 29 inches and my hips are 35 inches. I'm 5 foot 4, size 8-10 and weigh 8 stone 10 I think.

I don't feel particularly fat? confused

cathyandclaire Thu 08-Nov-12 09:30:56

Mine is 0.72 now ( 5ft 3, 8stone 3, size 8 ish). I've always been a pear but since 40 I've found more weight has gone on my middle, so I started to look more and more solid. I recently lost a stone on a low-carb diet and measured myself regularly and it was mostly my waist measurement that dropped from 28.5 to 25.5, my hips barely changed at all and my thighs went down a bit (but nowhere near enough for my liking!!!)

Does that mean my organ fat has gone down? Hope so!

rowingdowntheriver Thu 08-Nov-12 09:32:06

I'm not sure I believe this, I have a very low BMI and healthy weight for my height yet imagine would fail this test horribly as I have no waist (not because i have excess fat but more because I have a wide rib cage) and narrow hips - there is only a few inches difference between my waist and hip measurement.

shine0ncrazydiamond Thu 08-Nov-12 09:34:07

I also laughed at 'whopping' 29 inch waist grin

FrameyMcFrame Thu 08-Nov-12 09:36:14

It's true but as you age fat starts to be stored around the middle more and more. I would look at your glucose intake and insulin resistance status. If you are even slightly insulin resistant then you are more likely to store fat on the waist.
Smoking also causes fat on the waist because it messes about with how your blood uses sugar and insulin.
A lower sugar diet might help you.
The other issue is where you measure the waist and hips. There is some controversy over this.

NightLark Thu 08-Nov-12 09:39:19

It's not nonsense. Unfortunately for me! WHR is way more important than bmi in assessing risk. There's a Lancet research paper on it if you want a really respected source. It is an indicator of internal fat, if you are an apple you have to remain very slim indeed to reduce your risks. It's not infallible, its a risk measure. Eg liposuction can give you a small waist by removing subcutaneous fat but won't decrease your risks.

EdsRedeemingQualities Thu 08-Nov-12 09:43:35

Yes but like Rowing, and dare I suggest it the OP, some of us are so skinny that there's not really any fat anywhere and it becomes more about the ratio of your hip bones to what is left of your waist - and both are tiny.

When I was very anorexic, my waist must have been around 25 and my hips probably 28ish - though I'm guessing - and that's a tiny ratio but when you're 6 stone and 5ft7, it definitely doesn't mean you have too much fat anywhere.

I mean if you're overweight AND have a large stomach measurement and smaller hips, that might well be relevant, but when you've virtually no fat anyway - it makes no sense.

EdsRedeemingQualities Thu 08-Nov-12 09:44:15

Also plenty of men and more masculine-shaped women have a small difference between their waist and hips and are very thin indeed. It's just called being a different shape.

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