Waist to hip ratio: an easy way to describe your body proportions and helps you determine your overall health risks, such as type II diabetes and heart disease. Studies show that abdominal fat is one of the best predictors of health risk. People who are not overweight, but have a large waist size (pear shape) may indicate that they are at higher risk of health problems than those with a normal waist size.


Waist: at the level of navel or umbilicus.

Hip: the widest portion of the buttocks

Formula: waist/hip

Waist size: inches or cm

Hip size: inches or cm

Cut-off points for abdominal obesity (WHO-World Health Organization)

Women (Adult) > 0.85

Men (Adult) > 0.9

International Diabetes Federation criteria for waist circumference (Ethnic specific)

Country or ethnic group Sex Waist circumference(cm)
Europid MenWomen >94>80
South Asian MenWomen >90>80
Chinese MenWomen >90>80
Japanese MenWomen >90>80