Measuring the circumference of the chest, waist and hips is more than looking into the vital statistics of a person. The data gathered in these measurements can be used as a general indicator for health and predicts possible development of certain health conditions such as a metabolic syndrome and diabetes. Your local Lutz chiropractor can even give you tips on how to measure in person.

Evidence shows that those who have more weight around the waist or those with an apple-shaped body are more at risk to developing health risks as compared to those with more weight around the hips or those with pear-shaped bodies.

Abdominal obesity is a strong indicator for kidney diseases, diabetes and digestive conditions as a result of increased fat distributiion. Moreover, increased waist to hip ratio may also indicate increased risk for ovarian cancer, infertility and cardiovascular diseases. Looking into the circumferences of the chest, waist and hips can serve as a good way to monitor health and employ certain measures in cases that the ratios exceed the normal ranges.

Measuring the circumferences may involve certain techniques to get an accurate measurement. The following are the steps on how to measure these body circumferences:

Measuring the Chest Circumference

While standing straight, measure around the fullest portion of the chest. This is usally one inch below the arm hole or just above the nipple line. Make sure that the tape is parallel across the bust line and your upper back is not arched.

Measuring the Waist Circumference

To measure your waist circumference, stand erect in front of the mirror. For those with lean bodies, measure the circumference of the waist at the narrowest point of the trunk. This can be practically easy, but for those with a convex waist or those who are obese, measure the circumference one inch above the level of the navel. Measuring at the level of the navel itself may not provide true waist circumference.

Measuring the Hip Circumference

For the hip circumference, locate the widest portion of the hips or buttocks and measure at this point with the tape parallel to the ground.

Aside from the above steps, make sure that you use a stretch-resistant tape to get the most accurate measurement. Stand with the arms at the side and the feet close together. You should also distribute your weight evenly and you should be relaxed to get the measurements at your most comfortable stance. In addition, make sure to get the measurements during expiration and not during inspiration.

Get the measurements twice and compute for the average when the difference between the two is less than 1 cm. However, when the difference of the two measurements is more than 1 cm, repeat the two measurments altogether.

Getting these measurements can also help you compute for your waist to hip ratio. To get this, divide the waist circumference with the hip circumference. Abdominal obesity is above 0.85 for females and above 0.90 for males and this can be a significant predictor for the development of various weight-related conditions.

If you are concerned about your general health, make sure to get these measurements regularly at least once a month and compare your measurements to evaluate the progress of your exercise or healthy diet.