Obesity is a global health issue, with the World Health Organization (WHO) citing that worldwide rates of the chronic disease have tripled since 1975. In the US, obesity is also becoming more common in a number of states, prompting concerns over the health of Americans. Reports showed that 22 states had at least 35% of adults with obesity, up from 19 in 2021. The new data showed prevalence was highest in Louisiana, Oklahoma, and West Virginia, where more than 40% of adults were diagnosed with obesity.
Given the increasing obesity rates, people are looking for more ways to address the issue at hand. Common strategies include prioritizing a nutrient-rich diet and incorporating more physical activity in daily life. In line with this, waist training has raised questions about whether it could have broader applications in combating obesity, as it is able to effectively manage belly fat. Read on to find out whether waist training can actually help with obesity.
Before probing further into what waist training can do for obese individuals, it is essential to understand the condition itself. Obesity is a complex disease that occurs when an individual has too much excess weight; it increases the risk of other health complications within the body. It is sometimes interchanged with being overweight, which is why it is important to differentiate between the two. Essentially, it is the body mass index (BMI) that determines whether a person is overweight vs obese. The BMI is the measure of a person’s weight in proportion to their height, which is used as a basis to help gauge the body’s fat percentage. A normal BMI measures 18.5 to 24.9, while 25 to 29.9 is considered overweight. Obesity is diagnosed in those with a BMI of 30 and above.
In line with this, it is also crucial to consider the limitations of the BMI scale, as it does not account for the full range of factors that impact someone’s health and weight status. After all, weight is affected by lifestyle, dietary habits, physical fitness, and genetics—this calls for a more nuanced approach to tackling obesity and the reasons affecting a person’s weight. Generally, though, having excess weight is a pressing health concern, as it can cause conditions like heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol, liver disease, and certain cancers. As such, waist training is becoming a topic of interest as it may be able to address some of the complications caused by obesity.
Benefits of waist training for obesity
Waist training involves the use of garments that function similarly to corsets, as they cinch the waistline and help configure the appearance of an hourglass figure. Waist trainers usually consist of a combination of tough fabric and hard fibers. Hooks, Velcro, lacing, or other strong fasteners hold the trainer tightly in place. While this can reduce waist size or circumference, waist training cannot induce full-body weight loss. However, this limitation does not fully negate the benefits of waist training for obese individuals.
Instead of trying to spot and reduce fat, waist training can be done to complement the development of other healthy habits to promote weight loss. For example, a waist trainer can be worn throughout the day to help decrease appetite and curb cravings for less nutritious food that can cause weight gain. Additionally, waist training can improve posture and engage the core muscles more frequently, which can improve overall mobility when it comes to exercising.
Despite the benefits, having a garment tightly wrapped around the abdomen area can cause difficulty breathing, digestive issues, and fractured ribs when worn incorrectly. As such, it is important to find the right waist trainer. Make sure it is comfortable, does not pinch your skin, and only wear it for around 1-2 hours per day to avoid complications. You should also listen to your body and pause waist training if it starts getting too uncomfortable, as your health should always come first.
Above all, it’s good to keep in mind that the best way of addressing obesity is to find methods that can support your overall well-being without causing discomfort.