Ratio of waist circumference to height may be better indicator of need for weight management

BMJ 1996; 312 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.312.7027.377 (Published 10 February 1996) Cite this as: BMJ 1996;312:377
  1. Margaret Ashwella,
  2. Sonya Lejeunea
  1. Former science director, British Nutrition Foundation Former research assistant, British Nutrition Foundation Ashwell Associates, Ashwell Street, Ashwell, North Hertfordshire SG7 5PZ
  2. Professor of public health epidemiology Health Promotion Sciences Unit, Department of Public Health and Policy, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London WC1E 7HT

    EDITOR,—The metabolic consequences of obesity relate to the accumulation of visceral fat, which is seemingly reflected by the waist circumference. We add our support to the proposal that sex specific action levels based on the waist circumference could be used as a measure for managing weight.1 2 We also suggest that the ratio of waist circumference to height may be a superior measure for women as well as men.3

    We took data from the 1992 health survey for England.4 For each person (1411 men and 1481 women aged 30-74) anthropometric measurements …

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