Silent Killers: Love Handles Might Be Dangerous
What exactly are love handles?
Endearingly named, they refer to the fat deposits around your waistline – typically where a lover would hold on to.
Unfortunately, having such an innocent name does not diminish the risks that they may pose to your health. Not all fats are created equal and which part of your body you store these fats makes a world of difference. For example, carrying excess fats around your belly is worse than carrying them around your hips or thighs. Belly fats can increase your risks of cardiovascular diseases, stroke and diabetes.
One way to determine if you have love handles is to measure your waist-to-hip ratio (WHR). You will need a measuring tape for this.
|Normal WHR||less than 0.85 in women and 0.90 in men|
|High WHR||greater 0.85 in women and 0.90 in men|
Are you at risk?
1. Changes to your diet
• Reduce your alcohol consumption
• Reduce processed, packaged, or chemically altered food consumption—at least, it should not be your primary source of nutrition
• Don’t cut carbs – especially healthy complex carbs like sweet potatoes, oats and brown rice.
• Eat more healthy, good fats like avocado, nuts and fatty fish (e.g. salmon)
• Drink plenty of water (this is very important)
2. Changes to your lifestyle
• Sleep early – this is vital for your metabolism to work at its peak
• 30 minutes of cardio/ regular exercise – at least 3-4 times a week
• Manage your stress levels – meditation, yoga and relaxation techniques are good practices to start with
• Be patient, don’t expect to lose love handles fast – you don’t get love handles overnight, so don’t expect them to leave overnight too
According to Dr. Lopez Jimenez, the lead author of a study researching on body mass index and WHR as measures of cardiac risk, “the level of risk attributed to normal weight but central obesity appears to be similar to smoking a pack a day”.
Therefore, apart from wanting to look attractive and be able to fit into your skinny jeans, love handles are an urgent health risk that should be addressed at once. If you need professional advice and a body fat composition analysis to check if you are at risk, you may schedule a FREE appointment here. Our consultants will educate you better and tailor an exercise/diet plan just for you. Take control of your health today!