A large waist is neither attractive nor a sign of prosperity. Protruding (pot) bellies may once have been considered acceptable – a sign of success, if not a matter of pride. A badge of honour. This sentiment still exists in many African communities.
Waist loss must be the focus. Large waistlines are a sign of dis-ease. There is nothing benign, privileged or admirable about a pot belly. The fact is that beneath that belly lies a ticking time bomb. A large waist is strongly associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and death, even after controlling for BMI (Body Mass Index). This means that even if you are not overweight, having a large waist may mean that you are at a higher risk of health problems than someone with a trim waist.
The main cause of excessive abdominal fat is a diet high in refined carbohydrates, processed food, and sugar. Another important cause is chronic stress.
Focus on waist loss, not weight loss.
You do not need to look overweight or obese to be at risk of developing diabetes. People who are TOFI (thin outside fat inside) appear slim and fit. They look normal on the outside – even healthy. They are not. They are under-lean (not enough muscle) rather than overweight and tend to carry some weight around their middle (pot-bellied/apple shape).
Drop the bathroom scales and focus on your waist. Your waist measurement should be less than half of your height. Your waist size is not your trouser size. Measure your waist just at the level of your belly button. If it is more than half your height, you need to take action.
Remember to focus on waist loss, not weight loss.