The world of hip-hop is undeniably a world of excess. Everyday we see artists indulge in lots of
women, lots of jewelry and cars and lots of money. Yet one thing we seem to ignore is a few artists’ obvious overindulgence in food. Currently Miami bred rapper Rick Ross is at the top of his game; with a few platinum albums under his belt Ross has definitely come a long way from the hoods of Miami. One thing Ross is also at the top of is his weight class….and not in a good way.

According to statics provided by the Center for Disease Control about one-third of U.S. adults (33.8%) are obese and amongst African American men, 37 percent are considered obese. Anyone looking at Ross can see that he is well over the obese line and while Ross, and even some of his fans, may find the tatted up Buddha belly attractive, there is no question that it is extremely unhealthy. While fat in general is a health concern, belly fat in particular is dangerous because of the specific dangers it poses to vital organs.

Research has found that people with belly fat are more likely to have fat hidden around their organs. This fat, called visceral or intra-abdominal fat, is linked to high cholesterol, high insulin, high triglycerides, high blood pressure and other problems. In an article by USA Today author Nanci Hellmich quoted George Blackburn, associate director of the division of nutrition at Harvard Medical School as saying:

“At greatest risk of developing health problems from too much hidden belly fat are men whose waists are wider than 40 inches. If your waist measurement is that high, you’ve fallen off the edge of the cliff.”

Even though many of us tend to overlook the weight issues of celebrities like Rick Ross, the devastating effects are painfully real. How can hip-hop fans forget the tragic death of rapper Christopher “Big Pun” Rios, whose heart, encased in a 698 pound frame, gave out during a heart attack back in February 2000. Big Pun is just one example of the slippery slope Rick Ross and other men just like them are heading towards. There may be no quick fix or “magic pill” to solve the belly fat dilemma, but immediately incorporating a lifestyle change of diet and exercise is the best way to combat belly fat and improve one’s health. It may seem cute now to live in a world of excess, but it’s only fun until the fat kills you.

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  1. #1 reasons: It looks disgusting!

  2. Good article. We’ve never really promoted sustaining a healthy lifestyle in hip-hop because of the neighborhoods we come from. The truth is though, it’s a serious issue. We need more outlook on this the way Russle Simmons does (He’s a big yoga enthusiast)

  3. Obesity in the US is a problem in general and not sure when people are going to to wake up as many resort to gastric bypass, lap band sugrery and a host of other quick fixes and yet, if the change does not begin mentally coupled with discipline and exercise, all of of the former options has not relevance.

    As for the above comment regarding ‘the neighborhoods we come from’ – I beg to differ because healthy food choices begin at home. My mother prepared healthy meals daily and fast food was NEVER an option and on the rare times we did go out to eat, it was a restaurant and not a fast food establishment.

    We have to make smarter and healtheir choices.

  4. i appreciate this article. contrast this with the comments on the clutch article about boris kodjoe’s fat joke…black people seem to be in the dark about how weight/belly fat affects health. there is this constant need for boosting of the self-esteem for “big” people without having major concern about the negative and life-threatening consequences for a group of people who are at a higher risk for many medical conditions.

  5. “Even though many of us tend to overlook the weight issues of celebrities. . .”
    Correction: Many of us ten to overlook the weight of MALE celebrities.

  6. @Oluwakemi: The writer had it right the first time. How can you correct somone spelling it wrong yourself?

  7. oluwakwemi is simply saying for a black lady people comment on her weight but for black men they hardly look at their weight.

  8. And while he’s at it, he could lose that beard too!

  9. Rick Ross is the mothafuckin’ boss! I hope he doesn’t get too thin, i mean, wouldn’t fit him!

  10. I think another huge epidemic is people making other people’s health their unwelcome moral imperative, no different from anti-abortion activists, as a way to cover up the fact that they’re so disgusted by a the way someone looks that they must say something about it, but don’t want to actually say that. In the long run, if you simply said “I think he looks gross” rather than trying to pretend to give a shit about some rap star’s heart health, then you wouldn’t come across like such an incredible douchebag.

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