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Obesity Rate might be higher when BFP is taken into account

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Old 04-03-2012, 10:23 AM   #1
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Default Obesity Rate might be higher when BFP is taken into account

I read an interesting article on CNN today where it discusses BMI and how inaccurate it can be.

http://www.cnn.com/2012/04/03/health...html?hpt=he_c1

The article basically sums up to that BMI isn't an accurate indicator for health, body fat percentage is.

However in the same article they talk of lowering the BMI threshold for obesity to 28 for men and 24 for women!

Uh..what? How is that going to help any? 24 was previously "healthy" and now it's suddenly going to be "obese?" Hopefully this doesn't happen!
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Old 04-03-2012, 11:07 AM   #2
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I'm hitting my head on the desk at the moment at work. Talk about missing the point!

Ok, so I'm not that surprised that they found such a high percentage of men and women who were obese by body fat % if not by their BMI. Isn't that what we knew all along that BMI isn't that accurate on an individual level? I know I have friends who are either at a healthy weight or the low end of overweight and just aren't active at all. They never go to the gym, never work out etc. Sure, they might not have the same eating problems that I used to so their weight isn't that high BUT they're not exercising so their muscle mass isn't that great.

BUT and here's what they're missing out on here. There ARE obese/overweight individuals who workout. I can think of two of my friends off of the top of my head who have always been the same weight since I met them, they do overeat but exercise a lot. By BMI they're very likely both obese but I imagine in terms of health they're doing pretty well.

So I don't get it? Why in the WORLD would you lower BMI when the answer is right in front of you. CHECK BODY FAT PERCENTAGE. Ugh! Why can't doctors be trained at least to use callipers. Sure, it's not the most accurate but it has to be more accurate then weight (clearly after this not so surprising study). Why in the world would you lower the BMI for obesity when the answer is right in front of your eyes?

I'm just at a loss on why anybody thinks this is a good idea...
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Old 04-03-2012, 11:20 AM   #3
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Means I'll be "obese" on the charts forever. Oh well. I already knew it was flawed. I'm working on my body fat percentage and will just keep working on it!

BTW... to show how flawed the BFM scales can be, for me it reads between 27-29 usually. My husband stepped on the other day and it said 5% something. he has dry feet, so it was probably that, but it made me so "fake" mad! The injustice for him even to get that fake reading!

Then I read about calipers recently in how that for people who have loose skin that it's not very accurate and that makes sense. I have loose skin EVERYWHERE, so I'm sure it would throw off those percentages too.
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Old 04-03-2012, 11:34 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by berryblondeboys View Post
Means I'll be "obese" on the charts forever. Oh well. I already knew it was flawed. I'm working on my body fat percentage and will just keep working on it!

BTW... to show how flawed the BFM scales can be, for me it reads between 27-29 usually. My husband stepped on the other day and it said 5% something. he has dry feet, so it was probably that, but it made me so "fake" mad! The injustice for him even to get that fake reading!

Then I read about calipers recently in how that for people who have loose skin that it's not very accurate and that makes sense. I have loose skin EVERYWHERE, so I'm sure it would throw off those percentages too.
Oh, that's a good point about callipers.

Still, I wonder how accurate they are (even with the loose skin issue) compared to BMI. I mean, I just have a hard time believing that BMI could be more accurate. Especially for women like us who are very active with larger frames. Sometimes I think I need to switch fields and start researching obesity...
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Old 04-03-2012, 12:10 PM   #5
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BMI of 24 being obese? Ugh, this stuff frustrates me as a scientist. One of the few things I like about the common BMI scale is that it has that middle 'overweight' category, even if a lot of studies use it inconsistently to prove whatever point they are trying to make. Trying to group people with such a large range of weights for health studies flies in the face of good empirical research.
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Old 04-03-2012, 01:43 PM   #6
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I dunno, I'm smack in the middle of the "healthy" BMI range with a higher than ideal body fat percentage, but I think I could definitely be a healthy carrier for babies if I wanted to. This fascination with body fat seems like a recent thing, as in the last 40 years.
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Old 04-03-2012, 02:59 PM   #7
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WTF? How does that make any sense whatsoever? BMI is a blunt tool that doesn't take body fat percentage into account, and so overestimates in one direction and underestimates in another... and so let's lower BMI standards to capture those who have a high body fat percentage, and at the same time incorrectly capture even more of the people whom BMI already mis-classifies as overweight or obese? HUH??

And awesome, lol. I'd be obese again right now, at weight of 142.9 lbs and a BMI of 24.1. Wearing a size 8, exercising 5-6 days/week and having ZERO weight-related health issues or indicators. Swell.
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