Last updated on Nov 4th, 2015 at 12:43 pm

A small waist in proportion to your body shape is possible with dedicated attention to lifestyle and exercise.

People who have coronary artery disease are at increased risk of an early death if they have high waist fat levels. A waist measurement greater than 81 centimetres is considered a health risk.
Moreover, studies have shown that the waist/hip ratio (the hourglass shape) is a good gauge of attractiveness since it is suggestive of high fertility in biological terms.
Although your shape is determined primarily by genetics, you can’t blame your genes for not exercising or eating well!  The good news is that it is possible to trim considerable weight from your waist, whatever your body shape.
1.  Be prepared to change your eating habits
Apart from reducing your caloric intake, there are also some choices you can make that will help specifically with reducing your waistline. For example, in a scientific study, people who ate all whole grains, five servings of fruits and vegetables, and three small servings of protein daily, lost more belly fat than another group that ate the same diet, but with refined grains only. Some additional tips:

  • Eat healthier fats (avocados, nuts, seeds, pulses)

  • Avoid all trans fats (many processed/packaged foods, and anything containing hydrogenated oil)

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  • Eat more soluble fibre (apples, oats, cherries, raw veggies)

  • Reduce salt, fat, and sugar intake

  • Try to get all your vitamins and minerals through healthy food sources rather than through supplements

2.  Do specific exercises to improve the shape and size of your waist
Sit ups, crunches, squats, yoga, Pilates, and core tightening exercises, all help to whittle down your waist. Start slowly, increase gradually, and eventually you’ll find yourself exercising regularly without tiring and your waist will have benefited a great deal.
 
3.  Use a few helper objects when exercising
There are some additions to the exercise regime that can hasten your waist reduction:

  • Hula-hoop: Your waist and hips will benefit and youâ??ll have fun from 10 minutes a day of hula-hooping!

  • Dumbbells: Build shoulder and neck muscles by lifting dumbbells out from your sides for resistance.

4.  Cardio workouts are good for waists â?? just dance!
One way to get and keep your waist looking great is to dance! Just turn on the radio or listen to your iPod and dance around for about 20-30 minutes a day. Make sure you’re moving your whole body. Dancing burns off many calories, and you’ll look and feel great afterwards!

Warnings

  • Consult your physiotherapist or health professional before attempting any new exercise plan

  • If you have problems with bloating, speak to a health professional. Bloating may signify food intolerance, allergy, or disease

  • Be realistic: if you don’t have hourglass genetics, quit fretting and start making the most of the shape with which you have been blessed.

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