What is wrong with the BMI index?

BMI (body mass index), which is based on the height and weight of a person, is an inaccurate measure of body fat content and does not take into account muscle mass, bone density, overall body composition, and racial and sex differences, say researchers from the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania.

What is the problem with BMI?

According to the National Institutes of Health, “The higher your BMI, the higher your risk for certain diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, gallstones, breathing problems, and certain cancers.” That’s why doctors are inclined to use this measure of overweight and obesity with patients.

Why the BMI is not accurate?

BMI is not an accurate predictor of health because it does not account for body fat percentage or body fat distribution. In addition, BMI cannot accurately predict the health of different demographics and races because it was created with data from only white Europeans.

Is the BMI scale outdated?

Though it has been used for decades as the go-to measurement for your health based on your size, it has been widely criticized for its oversimplification of what being healthy really means. In fact, many claim BMI is outdated, inaccurate, and shouldn’t be used in medical and fitness settings.

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Is BMI a good health indicator?

BMI is a useful indicator of health at the population level. However, the distribution of fat on your body is more important that the amount, when assessing your disease risk. For this reason, your waist circumference is thought to be a better predictor of health risk than your BMI.

Do doctors still use BMI?

It is used in population studies, by doctors, personal trainers, and others. However, BMI has some important flaws. For example, it does not measure overall fat or lean tissue (muscle) content. BMI is derived from a simple math formula.

Can you trust BMI?

Body mass index is not specific to any particular health risk – and that’s its strength, experts say. However, a BMI above the healthy range or too much fat around the waist is known to increase the risk of serious health problems, including stroke and certain cancers.

Does your BMI really matter?

As a single measure, BMI is clearly not a perfect measure of health. But it’s still a useful starting point for important conditions that become more likely when a person is overweight or obese.

What is more accurate than BMI?

Waist-to-height ratio more accurate than BMI in identifying obesity, new study shows. Summary: Calculating a person’s waist-to-height ratio is the most accurate and efficient way of identifying whether or not they are at risk of obesity in clinical practice, a new study shows.

What is a good BMI score?

For most adults, an ideal BMI is in the 18.5 to 24.9 range. For children and young people aged 2 to 18, the BMI calculation takes into account age and gender as well as height and weight.

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What is the healthiest BMI?

If your BMI is less than 18.5, it falls within the underweight range. If your BMI is 18.5 to 24.9, it falls within the normal or Healthy Weight range. If your BMI is 25.0 to 29.9, it falls within the overweight range. If your BMI is 30.0 or higher, it falls within the obese range.

How accurate is BMI if you are muscular?

A glob of muscle weighs about 18 percent more than the same size glob of fat. So, according to the BMI, the sprinter is more overweight than the sedentary person. But as I said earlier, a glob of muscle weighs about 18 percent more than the same size glob of fat, so this is clearly not an accurate statement.

What weight do I need to be to have a BMI of 25?

4 in. tall is considered overweight (BMI is 25 to 29) if she weighs between about 145 and 169 pounds. She is considered obese (BMI is 30 or more) if she is closer to 174 pounds or more.

Is WHR a better indicator than BMI?

WHR is an easy, inexpensive, and accurate way to see how much body fat you have. It can also help predict your risk for heart disease and diabetes. A few studies suggest that WHR is even more accurate than BMI for predicting the risks of cardiovascular disease and premature death .

Is a BMI of 17.5 bad?

The American Dietetic Association (ADA) defines the ideal body mass index (BMI) as between 20 and 25. Thus, anyone below that range would be considered underweight and those with a BMI from 18.5 to 17.5 extremely underweight.

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What is the best indicator of overall health?

Body mass index or BMI has long been the standard for measuring health. The simple formula is widely used to classify whether our weight falls within a “healthy” range for our height. BMI provides an estimate of a person’s overall disease risk, and is used around the world to measure obesity.

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