Not long ago if you had a cholesterol reading of under 200 you were considered to have good heart health. In recent years, however, medical science has shown us that it’s actually the composition and properties of that cholesterol that indicate heart health (HDL, LDL, size of cholesterol particles, etc). Likewise, we have begun to understand that being skinny doesn’t necessarily mean you’re healthy. Total body weight isn’t really the best indicator of health. It’s more a matter of the composition of that body weight and where it is on the body (body fat percentage).
Studies at the Mayo Clinic recently found that a number of adults with normal BMIs (weight to height ratios) actually have quite high body fat percentages and as well as cardiac and metabolic disturbances. Put simply, people who seemed to have very normal body weights had just as much risk for coronary disease, diabetes, and other chronic illness as people who were much heavier.
As a result of this research there has now been a new condition established known as NWO (normal weight obesity). Although it sounds crazy it’s definitely worth your time to pay attention to. The accumulation of fat around the belly and internal organs can actually cause inflammation that will eventually damage tissues and blood vessels. So how can you check yourself and make sure that you’re body fat percentage and cholesterol composition are within normal limits? Try these:
- Measure your body fat – To quickly check this, wrap a measuring tape around your waist just above your belly button. If you have a normal weight but the number is higher than 35 inches for women or 40 for men, then you have reason to take action.
- Get a blood test – Ask your doctor at your next physical. If you have high HDL levels along with above average blood sugar or blood pressure then once again you should consider taking action.
- Target belly fat – Avoid white carbs (white bread, rice, and pasta) and do interval exercises to burn more fat.
Being skinny should not be a main priority for your body composition. Eating healthy and training hard should be your main focus. If you are training the right way, your body will adjust on its own. Measuring health by skinniness is very inaccurate and can be dangerous. Please re-tweet this article if you know people who’s main goal is to get skinny instead of healthy. People in the habit of trying to get skinny may also try to use fat burning supplements to do so. Read about fat burning supplements in the article, The Real Truth About Fat Burning Supplements.