The Thin Line Between Fat And Curvy

How do you know if you are voluptuously curvy or just simply overweight and fat?

As a child, we have been told never to call overweight people “fat” in their face. When we are older, we are told that the politically correct term to use is “curvy” unless you really dislike that person, which is another story totally.

But as this author, Kimberly Manderson, opines in a Thought Catalog blog post “’Fat’ and ‘curvy’ are not the same”, “curves imply arcs, parts of the body that wave in and out—not rolls of excess fat and skin, sagging over the bones it’s meant to be covering”.

So when does one step over the curvy line and officially into the overweight category?

Traditionally, body mass index (BMI) is the measurement of choice for most healthcare professionals to determine if the person is overweight. But doctors also caution that it should not be the only method of screening. “BMI is simply a measure of how heavy a person is as compared to how tall a person is. While it gives us an idea what kind of health risk the person is facing, healthcare practitioners need to do further assessments to fully evaluate health risks,” says Dr. Terence Tan, Director for Halley Medical Aesthetics (Halley). “We must take into consideration things like the patient’s medical history, waist circumference, percentage body fat, increased fat over the waist or male pattern obesity or an apple-shaped body is associated with greater health risk than increased fat over the hip or female pattern obesity or a pear-shaped body.”

How do doctors determine if the person is simply curvaceous or has too much fat in the area?

“Doctors have many tools in their disposal for assessment of body shape. The simplest way is to physically measure the waist and hip to get a waist hip ratio. We can also use the body fat pinch test where we use a tool called the skinfold caliper to measure the skinfold thickness,” explains Dr. Tan.

Curvy or fat? Voluptuous or overweight?

It’s really better to let a doctor determine if you need help with weight management which can be paired with body contouring treatments like cryolipolysis or fat freezing devices like CoolSculpting by Zeltiq. “The key word is balance. We do not want people to go overboard with their dieting effort yet at the same time, we must treat areas of excess of fat so that our patients can be more confident with their outlook in life. A confident person is a beautiful person,” concludes Dr. Tan.

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