What is your ideal waist size? Check the latest criteria

BMI is a traditional method that helps you determine your ideal body weight. Here's another method that can help you know how much you need to lose or gain around your waist. It can be calculated within a few minutes.

 |  2-minute read |   08-04-2022
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Weight loss and weight gain have been one of the biggest concerns of all time. While half of the population is trying to lose weight, the other half is trying to gain weight. Everyone is trying to reach that perfect body weight that is yet to be defined.


Body mass index (BMI) is a commonly used indicator that helps find out one’s ideal body weight. But this method comes with some drawbacks.

It skips the eating habits of a person, and also ignores the existing health conditions of an individual.

Therefore, many new methods have been developed in the past to find out what an ideal weight of an individual should be.

Some recent guidelines also share a new way to calculate your ideal body weight.


The latest guidelines by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) say that an adult’s waist should be less than half of their height.

For example, if you are 160 cm tall, then your waist size should be 80 cm which is 31.4 inches.


These guidelines pay extra attention towards belly fat and mention that BMI fails to focus on extra weight around the waist, which is harmful to one’s overall health.

Excess weight around the waist is linked with a higher risk of several diseases including type-2 diabetes, hypertension and heart diseases.

Therefore, it becomes crucial to follow certain steps that can help you avoid extra deposition of fat around the belly.


Till now, you might have calculated your ideal waist size with the help of the above-mentioned method. But this is not a new concept. Commonly known as the string method, this concept has been used to calculate ideal body weight and waist sizes for ages.

In the string method, you need to take a string that is equal to your height. Then, fold it from the centre and wrap it around your waist. Now, this will tell you how much weight you need to gain or lose. If it’s equal, your waist size is perfect according to this method.



Earlier, Oxford Brookes University in the UK had found that the string method is a better indicator than BMI. 

The study further defines that BMI does not indicate where the fat is located on your body.

Also, two people with the same BMI can have different health issues and eating habits.

Whereas, the string method helps you know how much you need to lose around the waist (the fat which is most harmful to your overall health). 

"Therefore, measuring your height with string, folding that piece of string in half, and making sure that it can fit comfortably around the waist is a better indicator than BMI," the study mentions. 


Varsha Vats Varsha Vats @varshavats19

Varsha Vats believes in unbiased journalism, and loves writing on health, lifestyle, food, entertainment and anything other than politics. She is a Senior Sub editor at DailyO.

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