Breaking Down BMI – Part II

Going back to BMI — I know I know, do we have to??  Lets get through part two then we don’t ever have to chat about it again – Unless you bring it up and want some more info!  When we left off two weeks ago, we were chatting about the limitations of BMI or why we need some other tool or measurement.

Since the BMI calculation uses your height and weight, your measurement for success greatly limits itself (unless you can grow a few inches) to simply changing your weight.  Now we think it sounds more sophisticated then just weight itself and it is, a little.  BMI becomes very useful especially when looking at children and their development, since they do grow up (in height that is!).  Since obesity is such a hot topic around this country, even sadly with the younger people in our worlds.  Because weight and emotion can become so intertwined, the best thing to encourage with this population is maintaining weight as they grow in height.  This causes the BMI to decrease even though their weight never changed.  In these situations, the best course of action does not encourage weight loss, which can be emotionally damaging and often not healthy in the bigger picture.

BMI varies greatly when looking at adults.  First, it does not measure an improvement in body composition.  Some individuals get labeled as overweight or obese because of a high amount of muscle.  The muscle increases their weight therefore causing the unhealthy BMI.  Second, the continued hyperfocus on weight loss and BMI does not take into consideration health on any level.  Plenty of people carry extra weight yet maintain perfect health and vice versa — plenty of people show the perfect weight yet take enough medication to open a small pharmacy.

Bottom line, if we all took the opportunity to develop health and let our bodies respond accordingly, we’d change our society!

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