Weight Loss Specialist Hartford CT

For many of us, the number on our bathroom scale makes or breaks our day: joy, if it moves downward a few pounds, and despair if it creeps upward, as we diet, sweat, and stress our way toward that magical number we believe defines our ideal weight.

Anytime Fitness
(860) 570-0123
340 N. Main St.
West Hartford, CT
 
Hartford Tennis Club Inc
(860) 232-0841
25 Flagg Rd
West Hartford, CT
 
Counseling Center
(860) 522-4183
160 Jewell St
Hartford, CT
 
Anytime Fitness West Hartford, CT
(860) 570-0123
340 N. Main St.
West Hartford, CT
Programs & Services
24-hr Operations, Cardio Equipment, Circuit Training, Elliptical Trainers, Free Weights, Parking, Personal Training, Spinning, Stair Climber, Stationary Bikes, Treadmill, Weight Machines

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Ywca Health and Fitness Center
(860) 525-1163
135 Broad St
Hartford, CT
 
YWCA Child Care
(860) 525-1163
135 Broad St
Hartford, CT
 
Creative Nursery Schools YWCA
(860) 525-1163
135 Broad St
Hartford, CT
 
Tennis Corporation Of America
(860) 246-2201
90 State House Sq Fl H1
Hartford, CT
 
Hartford Jewish Community Center
(860) 236-4571
333 Bloomfield Ave
West Hartford, CT
 
Saint Francis Hosp and Med Ctr
(860) 714-4414
95 Woodland St
Hartford, CT
 
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Beyond the Bathroom Scale

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By Lisa Turner

For many of us, the number on our bathroom scale makes or breaks our day: joy, if it moves downward a few pounds, and despair if it creeps upward, as we diet, sweat, and stress our way toward that magical number we believe defines our ideal weight. But that number may not carry as much import as people—and many doctors—have long thought. It turns out that what you weigh isn’t nearly as important as where that weight is.

“Scale weight alone isn’t the best way to assess fitness,” says Philipp Scherer, Ph.D., a professor of cell biology and medicine at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, Bronx, New York, and an expert on fat and metabolism. “It’s more about the quality of fat in the body, which includes where it’s located within our system. We’re learning that this is the critical measure of fitness.”

Unfortunately, ever since the 1950s, everyone’s focused almost exclusively on poundage, which of course lacks context: 130 pounds may qualify as lean for someone who’s 5’8”, but chubby for shorter folks.

To account for variations in height, health researchers in the 1970s popularized the Body Mass Index (BMI). But that doesn’t accurately gauge your health either, because it doesn’t distinguish between body fat and muscle mass. Basketball player Shaquille O’Neal, who’s as sinewy as they come, “has a BMI over 30, which makes him technically obese,” says Mark Hyman, MD, author of Ultrametabolism (Scribner, 2006). On the flip side, “you can also have a low BMI of 19 or 20, but have an unhealthy body fat measure of 50 percent, which is common in the elderly, who lose substantial muscle mass and bone as they get older.”

To address this problem, doctors measure body-fat percentages, often calculated by the skin-fold test. Using set of calipers, the tester pinches different areas of your body, such as the waist and triceps. She then plugs the thickness of each pinch into a formula that calculates body-fat percentage. While this produces more meaningful information, it, too, fails to measure fat distribution, which may be the major factor for predicting disease risk.

Fat, like real estate, is all about location, location, location. Study after study shows that people who carry excess weight around their middle have significantly higher risk for heart disease, diabetes, and other serious illnesses than those who carry it in their hips and thighs,. The INTERHEART study—one of the largest case-controlled studies to examine the causes behind cardiovascular disease—identified abdominal obesity as a leading risk factor for heart attack and found that it predicts cardiovascular disease better than BMI. Additional studies have revealed that belly fat also raises your risk of colon cancer and diabetes. When determining abdominal obesity, it’s the circumference of your waist, rather than your weight, that’s the critical measurement, says Peeke. “Measure around your waist with a tape measure at the level of your belly button,” she says....

Author: Lisa Turner

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