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Is BMI outdated ?

BMI (Body Mass Index) is an oft-quoted guide to whether someone is under or overweight. It is calculated through dividing your weight by your height in metres squared.

(For example if you weigh 100kg and are 2m tall, your BMI is 100/(2x2)=25 high end normal range)

For most adults, an ideal BMI calculation is in the 18.5 to 24.9 range. So,today’s question is, “is BMI an outdated measure?” Short answer? Yes! But let us explore why…

One size does NOT fit all!

BMI does not take into consideration a persons age, sex, genetics, lifestyle, medical history, or other factors. So it misses out other vital measurements of health including blood sugar and inflammation levels. As well as this, there is one calculation for both men and women when the body composition of each sex is entirely different. This is due to muscle density and the simple fact that muscle weighs much more than fat. So while BMI can be a guide, its certainly not an answer.

It does not account for all ethnicities.

BMI does not account for all ethnicities. A study by Dr Rishi Caleyachetty shows that a BMI of 30 would trigger action for a person belonging to a white ethnic group. However, the threshold for South Asians is 23.9, for Arabs is 26, and for a Black Caribbean is 26.6. So, if you are not in these ethnic groups and your weight is lower, you could still be at risk. In other words BMI does not take into account ethnicity so the result can be misleading. patients the incorrect diagnosis.

It may delay treatment for other problems.

We are over relying on an outdated scale making it difficult to gauge whether someone is truly healthy or at risk. A BMI of 24.9 is deemed “healthy” (just) but in an Asian its not healthy at all. So falsely reassuring someone in potentially poor health. Who might delay seeking testing and help.

“Overweight” and “OverFat” are not the same!!

The food industry (and many health professionals) assume that if you are overweight (raised BMI) you are must be unhealthy and should simply ‘lose weight.’ But what actually matters isn’t how you look on the outside.. its what is going on the inside of your body. You could be the leanest human being in the world, run ten miles a day and still suffer from serious health problems because your glucose levels are out of whack, and you may be overtraining.

Professor Tim Noakes is the world’s leading authority on the science behind sport and what to eat to achieve peak performance. He even managed to reverse his own type 2 diabetes by cutting out carbs and eating plenty of fats going against the standard medical advice of carb-loading your plates every day. You can read the full blog here: Reversing the Diabetes Pandemic (prolongevity.co.uk)

This is something the food industry does not want you to realise, so you keeps buying those so called ‘health foods’ including drinks such as Innocent Smoothies which are poisoning your body and addicting your mind.

Chris Van Tulekan recently challenged himself to consume a diet made up of a majority of ultra-processed foods. You can read more about this here: What happened when I ate ultra-processed food for a month - BBC Food

This and yet another reason why we established Prolongevity. We look at the bigger picture, so you can take control of your overall health and live healthier for longer.

Click the link below for more information about our ethos and how ProLongevity can help you.

Overview of ProLongevity | PreDiabetes | Type 2 Diabetes