Is BMI an Accurate Predictor of Health?

Is BMI an Accurate Predictor of Health?

Body Mass Index is one of the most popular and widely used measurements to measure a person’s health based on that individual’s height and weight. However, multiple researchers who studied calculating body health based on physical appearance indicated that this way of determining a person’s health is not correct. To know what we think about BMI and if it is an accurate predictor of health, keep reading this piece, and you will find out.

Body Mass Index, popularly known as BMI, is a health calculator that defines whether or not your body is healthy. Depending on your body size, weight, and height, your BMI is determined and whether you are healthy. But, to answer whether BMI is an accurate predictor of health or not- it is not. Some may still believe in the BMI calculator and how it works, it is impossible to determine a person’s health based on the calculation.

What is a BMI calculator?

BMI calculator is an age-old go-to measurement for health based on physical appearances like height and weight. This calculator was developed by a Belgian mathematician & statistician- Lambert Adolphe Jacques Quetelet in the year 1832. It was designed to quickly estimate the degree of obesity and overweight in the given population. He developed the BMI calculator to help the government decide where to allocate financial and health resources. He also stated that this method is not used to determine an individual’s health; instead, it is used to establish the whole population’s health. Nevertheless, it is still widely used to determine an individual’s health.

Doctors still use BMI measurements as their screening tool to determine what category you fall into, depending on the calculation. This method can help the doctors understand better if you are at risk of health conditions such as diabetes or heart diseases. While BMI may be an affordable, quick, and easily accessible way to check your health, the formula is best suited for gaining information about the general population, according to Stanford. But BMI does not measure body fat distribution; hence, calling it a calculator that calculates health will not be valid. The specific location of fat in your body is one of the most important factors when considering overall health. BMI does not include that particular factor in its calculation. Upper body fat, fat around the midsection, and visceral fat, also known as the fat stored within the abdominal cavity and around several vital organs, including the stomach, intestine, and liver, are more likely to cause health issues like cardiovascular disease. If the body fat is stored in the lower part of the body, then it will cause less severe health conditions than the fat in the upper body.

How is BMI calculated?

BMI is an estimation of your body fat by dividing your weight in kg by your height in meters squared, which is BMI= kg/m2. The results that you get are based on this calculation. This will determine whether you are underweight, normal, overweight, or obese.

As per BMI calculations, you will be considered:

Underweight if the final calculation is less than 18.5

Normal if the final calculation is from 18.5 to 24.9

Overweight if the final calculation is from 25- 29.9

Obese if the final calculation is anything above 30