The “Waist-to-Height Ratio”

In recent years, a relatively new measure to estimate overweight and the associated health risks has gained in importance: the Waist-to-Height Ratio, in short WHtR.

Unhealthy fat cushions on the stomach?

Today, we know that abdominal fat is critical from a health standpoint. Where the fat cushions accumulate in the body is important when it comes to the question of whether the excess pounds represent a health problem. Because in contrast to rounding around the bottom and hips, abdominal fat is associated with a significantly increased risk of metabolic (e.g. diabetes mellitus type 2) and cardiovascular system disorders.

  • A slightly increased health risk is already present at a waist size of more than 80 centimetres in women or more than 94 centimetres in men.
  • An increased health risk is already present at a waist size of more than 88 centimetres in women or more than 102 centimetres in men. This is when doctors speak of so-called “trunk obesity”.

Therefore, the circumference of the abdomen should also be measured. A measured value that takes into account the size of the abdomen is the so-called waist-to-height ratio.

WHtR: The ratio of abdominal circumference to height

The waist-to-height ratio (WHtR) is a relatively new measure to assess excess weight and the associated health risks. It measures the circumference of the abdomen (waist) in comparison with the height. The corresponding formula for calculation is:

WHtR =Abdominal circumference [in cm]
Height [in cm]

Calculate your WHtR now:
Enter your data on abdominal circumference, height and age here.

WHtR calculator


Your WHtR: 0.5714

Classification: You are over the limit

For young adults, the rule of thumb is that the abdominal circumference should not be greater than half of the height. The following table provides an overview of age-dependent limits:

< 40> 0,5
40 - 50> 0,5 - 0,6
> 50> 0,6

Measuring abdominal circumference: How it works

Your abdominal circumference should be measured in the morning before breakfast.

  • Stand upright in front of a mirror with a naked upper body.
  • Apply the measuring tape half way between your rib arch and your hips.
  • Inhale and exhale once deeply, do not pull in your stomach when you do this.
  • At the end of the exhalation, read the value on the measuring tape.
  • With an abdominal circumference of > 80 cm in women and > 94 cm in men, there is already a slightly increased health risk.
Measuring abdominal circumference: How it works

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