Apple or Pear- It’s all Bananas
There is a lot of hype out there about the perfect body type. You can take an internet poll and compare your measurements against a chart that will tell you whether your body fits the shape of an apple more than a pear. You can then look through countless slideshows that will compare your body shape with those of celebrities whose bodies are on show for us day and night. It doesn’t take an expert to see that all of these polls and body shapes hold no medical significance. Comparing your body to a piece of fruit will do nothing for your health. Eating the fruit, however, might be a better way to start.
Notions about body shape come out of the idea that having a certain size waist indicates health more than the size of your hips, legs or arms. However, a more accurate understanding of health reveals that whole-body wellness is ideal for optimal health. Keeping a positive self-image of your body is crucial when you are trying to lose weight. This intrinsic support cannot come from anywhere else. Shaming yourself for not fitting a certain body type is more likely to do damage to your weight loss progress than help you understand anything about yourself that you didn’t already know.
There are a few ways of measuring body composition, including BMI, waist circumference and waist-to-hip ratios. If you have ever opened a health or fashion magazine then you have probably read countless tips on how to reduce your stomach or hips and how having a curvy disposition puts you at an increased risk for certain health conditions.
It is true that visceral fat, the fat that builds around the abdomen, is especially taxing on the body and will amplify your risk of heart disease and diabetes. However, your risk for obesity related diseases, like type-2 diabetes and heart disease, will increase with any weight gain. This statement remains true regardless of body type. If you are carrying excess weight in your stomach, hips, or elsewhere, then that weight can put you at an increased risk for a series of medical concerns. Medical weight loss programs feature a combination of nutritional support and personal fitness training to address the whole body, thus maximizing weight loss and offering substantial health benefits.
Don’t get caught up in fad diets that cater to the hype of certain body shapes. All bodies are made equally. Focus on what you can do to be healthier, and less on what your body shape says about you.