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Does BMI actually mean anything?

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Old 03-24-2014, 01:22 PM   #16
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In my opinion BMI is almost useless. The only thing it is good for is to assist an obese person to pick a starting target goal weight. Why do I feel this way?

BMI is not an indication of health. You can be skinny and about to die or overweight and incredibly healthy. Diet and lifestyle determine health, not your weight. I qualify this of course with the knowledge that past a certain weight your health will suffer especially long term but BMI will not help you find this point.

BMI doesn't tell you how you look. You can be a healthy BMI and feel you need to lose a lot still or you can be "overweight" and perfectly content.

BMI was not created to measure anything with an individual.
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Old 03-24-2014, 01:43 PM   #17
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Here is headless me at 6'1" tall (73 inches) and 150lbs exactly

Looks like we have similar body types. I'm 5'11" and weigh 145 lbs. I also don't look skinny.


Last edited by freelancemomma : 03-24-2014 at 01:43 PM.
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Old 03-24-2014, 02:06 PM   #18
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That is a fantastic article about BMI.

If you want a quick and easy number, waist size is much better. Men under 40 and women under 35 inches have much better health outcomes.

BMI not only is totally wonky with the squaring, but it takes no account whatsoever of the difference between muscle, bone, and fat. Most NFL players with under 10 percent body fat would be 'obese'.

But it is barely useful even for the general public.
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Old 03-24-2014, 02:52 PM   #19
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BMI is a starting point but so many other things come into play... interesting quote from a clinical Endocrinology study:

Conclusions: Increasing paternal age at childbirth is associated with a more favourable phenotype in their children (taller and slimmer, with better insulin sensitivity in girls) but with a less favourable lipid profile.

So even though BMI is lower, the LDL/HDL profile is less healthy...

Here's the whole article if anyone is interested

This site is a Health Professionals' Continuing Education site.

Quick quote - sorry but it is quite 'scientific' in language - but extremely interesting nonetheless.
"As paternal age at childbirth increased, their children displayed a reduction in BMI and truncal fat. As BMI in childhood is predictive of adult BMI, our findings suggest that the slimmer children of older fathers may have a lower risk of obesity in adulthood.[18] Increased truncal fat is a component of the metabolic syndrome, so that the children born to fathers aged over 30 years may be at a lower risk of metabolic disease and obesity. Importantly, the observed improvement in insulin sensitivity seen among girls born of older fathers would support this hypothesis, as a reduction in insulin sensitivity is predictive of the metabolic syndrome in adulthood.[19] Nonetheless, there are conflicting reports regarding the effects of paternal age at childbirth on offspring obesity. In contrast to our study, a recent large investigation found an increased risk of obesity in young adult offspring in association with increasing paternal age. However, this was only observed when groups at the extreme of the paternal age spectrum were compared (<20 vs >50 years).[8] Furthermore, unlike our study, they only examined males and parental BMI was not accounted for in their analyses to correct for genetically determined obesity.[8]

However, increasing paternal age at childbirth was also associated with less favourable lipid profiles in their children. Specifically, children of fathers over 30 years of age had higher total cholesterol to HDL-C ratios compared with the children of younger fathers. Childhood lipid profiles worsened as paternal age at childbirth increased further, so that the children of fathers aged over 35 years had higher total cholesterol (due to higher LDL-C concentrations) than children of fathers aged ≤35 years. Childhood lipid profiles track or accentuate into adulthood.[20] It is therefore possible that the less favourable lipid profiles in these children may deteriorate further later in life, placing them at a greater risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood."


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Old 03-24-2014, 04:36 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by MauiKai View Post
Here is headless me at 6'1" tall (73 inches) and 150lbs exactly

Looks like we have similar body types. I'm 5'11" and weigh 145 lbs. I also don't look skinny.

I can go as low as the upper 130s and still look fine. No one is accusing me of starving or being too thin in that range.

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Old 03-24-2014, 04:53 PM   #21
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I think BMI is pretty realistic for the average person, as everyone has said. Body composition is everything.

I have maintained between 125 and 130 for over two years now. In that range I have had periods of lots of exercise and very little, so even though my weight barely changes, my clothing and overall "look" vary a lot.

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