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  • Q&A with Australian Health Practitioners

    Is belly fat a risk factor for diabetes?

  • Find a professional to answer your question

  • 2


    Lisa Renn


    Lisa is an APD with 12 years experience, specialising in helping people identify and change habits that impact negatively on their health. Inspiring change, Lisa … View Profile

    Hi there,
    Belly fat is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes which is why one of the “tests” that measure diabetes risk is waist circumference. You are considered at increased risk if your waist circumference is greater than:
    80cm for women and 94cm for men

    Carrying extra fat on your abdominal area contributes to insulin resistance which means that your insulin doesn't work as well as it should, this leads to higher blood sugar levels and if they get too high the diagnosis of diabetes follows.

    Check in with an APD if you are concerned about excess weight on your belly as a Accredited Practising Dietitian can tailor a plan to assist with weight loss that considers your individual lifestyle and habits.
    Good Luck.

  • 1


    Ellen Moran

    Dietitian, Nutritionist

    Ellen Moran is an Accredited Practising Dietitian who promotes credible nutrition information, tailored to your personal health goals and needs. She has a special interest … View Profile

    Yes, excess fat around the waist is one of the biggest risk factors for diabetes. In women, excess belly fat equates to 80cm around the waist, and in men, 94cm. To measure your waist circumference, place the tape snugly against your skin, breathe out normally and wrap it around you. The correct place to measure your waist is horizontally halfway between your lowest rib and the top of your hipbone. This is roughly in line with your belly button.

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