FIT TIP: Know your waist-to-hip ratio!

Let’s talk about belly fat.

Nobody wants it, and once you reached your forties, it accumulates around your waistline way faster than when you were in your twenties. That’s mainly due to hormone changes, the decline in muscle mass (fat burns fewer calories than muscles), and lifestyle changes.

There is more to a growing waistline than not fitting in your favorite pair of pants anymore, it can present serious health problems. The expanding spare tire represents an increase in visceral fat, the type of fat that encases your organs. That is a decisive risk factor for heart disease (especially for women!), type 2 diabetes, and even some cancers.

The best way to know if you must slim down is by calculating your waist-to-hop ratio:

Here’s how:
Stand up straight and measure the narrowest part of your waist (usually that’s right about the navel) and the widest part of your hip. Then divide the waist circumference but the hip circumference: A healthy ratio for women is 0.85 and for men 0.9.

If your measurement comes up higher or you feel you need to lose weight take a closer look at your lifestyle:

– Are you staying active?
– Do you get your beauty sleep?
– Do you eat enough fiber or probiotic to maintain your digestive health?
– Take a closer look at your diet:
Food high in Vitamin C, vitamin D and calcium have been linked to less visceral fat. Spinach, kale, oranges, strawberries, and broccoli are rich in nutrients and essential vitamins. Stick with lean proteins like white meat chicken and most importantly, watch your portion size!

Getting older can make it harder to keep the weight off, but you can do it with a bit of extra effort.

Aging is not an excuse!