6 Myths About BMI
Posted October 25, 2022 by Anusha ‐ 3 min read
Body Mass Index or BMI is used to measure the body's fat on the basis of a person's weight in relation to height. The value derived from BMI determines whether the person is underweight, overweight, or has healthy weight according to the height. The higher BMI is a sign of too much weight while low BMI is a sign of too little fat on the body. Moreover, you can easily measure it by simply putting your height and weight on the online BMI calculator.
Myth 1: A low BMI means that you’re very healthy.
It is common knowledge that people who are overweight or obese or just a bit heavy are more prone to heart issues, high cholesterol levels, lethargy, and diabetes.
Since a low BMI means a lighter weight, you might think that having a low BMI would protect you from all these issues.
But this is not true! Researchers have failed to observe any relationship between these chronic diseases and increased BMI.
In fact, those with low BMI can still have elevated sugar levels and heart diseases.
Myth 2: A BMI between 19 and 25 means you are completely healthy.
Studies have shown that people who have normal weight according to their BMI but a higher waistline have the same or even higher risk than those who are obese.
This means that BMI alone cannot be a standard tool to talk about your health.
So, the next time someone worries about a higher BMI, ask them to get a proper health checkup done to verify their concerns.
Myth 3: BMI is not related to your ethnicity.
The ethnicity you belong to also plays a major role in deciding what issues you may be at risk of.
Ethnicity, again, is not taken into account when calculating your BMI.
So, even if someone shows as healthy on the BMI scale, they may be prone to various diseases.
For example, Asians with a healthy BMI still face increased risks of diabetes, high blood pressure, and other heart diseases.
Myth 4: BMI is not related to body type.
The type and location of fat in the body also affect your health, but this is ignored when calculating the BMI.
When your fat is stored in your belly, around your stomach, you have an apple or android body type.
When fat is stored in the thighs and hips, you are said to have a pear-shaped body.
While BMI cannot predict the patterns of fat storage in the body, other methods such as the DXA body scan or CT scans can help.
Studies have shown that apple-shaped bodies are more prone to health issues than pear-shaped bodies.
Myth 5: BMI takes into account other aspects of wellness.
In addition to the physical and genetic factors, other aspects that may influence a person’s health are also missed when calculating BMI. These include:
Myth 6: BMI means body fat, always.
BMI means body fat, always is a myth
Muscles are so much denser than body fat.
People who are muscular may thus end up weighing a little heavier, resulting in an increase in their BMI.
Although they would be considered healthy, because of their high BMI, they’ll still be classified as obese or overweight.
This concern is most notable among boxers, weight trainers, basketball players, and other athletes.