The Meaning of Hip To Waist Ratio
Your health is not only affected by how much body fat you have, but also by where most of the fat is located on your body. People who tend to gain weight mostly in their hips and buttocks have roughly a pear body shape, while people who tend to gain weight mostly in the abdomen have more of an apple body shape.
If you have an apple shaped body rather than a pear shaped body, you are at increased risk for the health problems associated with obesity, such as diabetes, coronary heart disease and high blood pressure - that's something you inherited, and have had since birth - but you can take special care to keep your weight at a healthy level, eat nutritiously, exercise as appropriate, and maintain other healthy lifestyle habits.
As long as you avoid excess weight, being an apple shaped body or a pear shaped body doesn't put you at special risk - it's just one of those things to keep in mind. And even pear shaped people should take particular care to keep their weight within normal limits, to avoid the health problems associated with obesity.
What is Waist Circumference?
According to the National Institutes of Health, a high Waist Circumference (WC) is associated with an increased risk for type 2 diabetes, dyslipidemia, hypertension and cardiovascular disease when the BMI is between 25 and 34.9. (A BMI greater than 25 is considered overweight and a BMI greater than 30 is considered obese.) Waist Circumference can be useful for those people categorized as normal or overweight in terms of BMI. (For example, an athlete with increased muscle mass may have a BMI greater than 25 - making him or her overweight on the BMI scale - but a Waist Circumference measurement would most likely indicate that he or she is, in fact, not overweight). Changes in Waist Circumference over time can indicated an increase or decrease in abdominal fat. Increased abdominal fat is associated with an increased risk of heart disease.