Quick, get out your tape measure and measure around your waist. For men this doesn't mean below your gut; it means around your mid-section. If you are a male and your waist circumference is greater than 40 or greater than 35 for females, then you are at greater risk for chronic disease and early death than your pear-shaped peers.

Current research suggests, however, that you can significantly reduce your risk of cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, etc. by simply losing 5 percent of your body weight and adding a little daily exercise. So that means if you weigh 220 pounds, losing just 11 pounds may get you out of the woods and on track to a healthier, improved quality of life.

See my next post “Exercise is Medicine” to see how to safely and effectively lose 11 pounds and keep them off.