Posts Tagged ‘body fat’

Good or Bad? …. or “Is”?

February 13, 2014

Think of the last time good and bad faceyou took a test, had blood work done, taken a measurement or completed a project.  What question did you ask first?  So often we do things in life and immediately wonder if it is “good or bad”.   Think about your weight, your cholesterol, your heart rate, your body fat, your last running event, a written test, your hearing, your vision or your (fill in the blank here!).  We immediately classify them good or bad.  I ask you, does it really matter?  Are these tests really absolute?  or a baseline starting point?  So what if your hearing sucks a little … something can be done to make it better (and chances are you already knew it was harder to hear things before the test).

How often have you experienced someone telling you “that’s bad” and then you feel stress or depressed about it?  What if we stopped labeling things such as weight and cholesterol as good and bad?  Ever heard the saying – “It is what it is.”  Would certain things feel different (meaning better!) if we labeled them as “is” instead of good and bad?  And starting using these numbers simply for baseline, starting point measurements.  Often we don’t really know the specific value for “good” and “bad”.  Giving yourself permission to be exactly where you are at that moment in time allows for more self acceptance!  Remember, “It is what it is” much of the time.

Breaking Down BMI – Part I

January 16, 2014

Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control show that about 67 percent of Americans are overweight or obese according to National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, or NHANES, data.  Excess weight contributes to many preventable health problems resulting in increasing healthcare costs.  Given the prevalence of overweight and obese Americans, doctors and statisticians need measurement tools to assess health status and progress.  Enter BMI.  By now, we’ve all heard of this and you probably even calculated yours at some point!

So what does this BMI mean exactly and does it really tell the whole story?  BMI is used worldwide and provides a consistent way to compare and analyze health status across large and small populations. BMI stands for body mass index and, according to research, indicates possible risk for certain preventable diseases.  To calculate your BMI, take your weigh in kilograms and divide by your height in meters squared.  Although not a measurement of body fat, some research states the BMI closely correlates to body fat.

Blah blah blah… How does this measurement fit into your life?  Well, first understand we use this measurement because of the ease of use across many populations, genders and ages.  This does not even begin to tell the whole story.  How many of you know someone who maintains a healthy weight/BMI yet smokes and drinks?  How many of you know someone who appears to hold onto extra weight yet eats a healthy diet and exercises regularly?  How many skinny people suffer from increased blood pressure or experience a heart attack?  What if you decrease your body fat by 5lbs and simultaneously gain 5lbs of muscle?  You still maintain the exact same BMI.  Starting to understand the limitations of this measurement tool?

Tune in for Part II to learn more about BMI and other ways to measure success!