Why You Shouldn’t Use BMI

The general population in today’s society is gaining fat and losing muscle. This means that, for some people, the low amount of muscle causes a weight loss which results in a normal BMI even though their bodyfat % is high! 50% of women and 25% of men have been shown to have a bodyfat % high enough to be classified as overweight even if their BMI is normal!

When looking at the underlying clinical indicators, the BMI also mislabels a large amount of people as unhealthy, even when they are not. It’s usually heavier individuals with more muscle mass.

In todays society, following the norms will make you overweight! BMI is thus not a good measure of your health as it is based on your height and your weight. It is much more important to keep track of in the amount of body fat and the amount of lean muscle you have. To reach a squid levels of these you must follow a good diet and exercise routine. Eating a little bit less candy and maybe go to the gym once a week more compared to your friends doesn’t mean that you are exercising and eating ENOUGH!

3-4 times a week of REGULAR exercise (INCLUDING WEIGHT TRAINING) and a REGULAR diet low in refined foods and high in protein and micronutrients is a good place to start.

Sources:

Klungland Torstveit M, Sundgot-Borgen J. Are under- and overweight female elite athletes thin and fat? A controlled study. Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2012 May;44(5):949-57.

Griffiths C, Gately P, Marchant PR, Cooke CB. A five year longitudinal study investigating the prevalence of childhood obesity: comparison of BMI and waist circumference. Public Health. 2013 Dec;127(12):1090-6.

Shah NR, Braverman ER. Measuring adiposity in patients: the utility of body mass index (BMI), percent body fat, and leptin. PLoS One 2012;7(4):e33308.

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