Adults with a large waistline (circumference) are at greater risk of premature death than those with a normal waistline. Do you know yours?

One study looked at data from 650,000 adults. There was an estimated decrease in life expectancy for the highest waist circumference compared to the lowest of about three years for men and five years for women. This effect was independent of other risk factors. Such as age, body mass index (BMI), physical activity, smoking history and alcohol consumption.

Male-female: the correct waist circumference and the one that indicates overweight and reduced life expectancy

Specifically, this data showed that men with a waist circumference of 110 centimeters had a more than 50% higher risk of death than men with a waist circumference of 94 centimeters. Among women, the risk of death was 80% higher for those with a waist circumference of 94 centimeters than for those with a waist circumference of 70 centimeters.

A large waist circumference is a warning sign of excess abdominal fat. This excess fat localized around the belly is associated with problems such as:

– obesity,
– type 2 diabetes,
– high cholesterol,
– high triglycerides,
– high blood pressure
– coronary heart disease

Do you know your waistline? Here’s how to measure it:

Locate your hip bone on your abdomen.
Wrap a measuring tape around your body at this level. It should fit snugly, but not press against your bare skin.
The tape should be parallel to the floor. Relax, exhale and read the measurement.

If you don’t like the number, don’t worry. Being active, eating well, and watching portions can have a positive impact on your height and overall health. Discuss your risks and health goals with your doctor.


Despres JP. Waist circumference as a vital sign in cardiology 20 years after its initial publication in the American Journal of Cardiology. American Journal of Cardiology. 2014;114:320. PMID: 24878123 DOI: 10.1016/j.amjcard.2014.04.043

* criptom strives to transmit health knowledge in a language accessible to all. In NO CASE, the information given can not replace the opinion of a health professional.