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Is BMI a useful measure of weight loss?

Losing weight sure is a modern obsession. As we become more in-tune with our bodies and what is good – and not good – for us, change becomes essential.

Losing weight sure is a modern obsession. As we become more in-tune with our bodies and what is good – and not good – for us, change becomes essential. People who are now far more aware of the causes of their ill health want to do something about it. Finding out if you are healthy weight or not, though, can be tough. For years, the Body Mass Index (BMI) was the go-to solution to see if we were in proportion with our body weight.

Using a mixture that would calculate your body height with your weight, you can quickly learn how “healthy” you are under BMI grounds. However, please note that BMI is probably not the tool that we had once assumed when it comes to working out your weight. Let’s take a look at the BMI, why it was such a useful force for good and why, today, you might do well to look at BMI in a different light.

Why am I supposed to measure my BMI?

For many people, they measure BMI using a tool like the one from hcg injections, as they hear it is a good measure of weight control. If you were to suffer from excessive weight gain, then you might wish to know where you stand. For example, if the number that BMI throws at you comes out at around 18.5-24.9, then you can feel happy with it according to the metric. If you fall outside of either 18.5 (underweight) or 25 (overweight) then you are in a bit of a problem situation.

If you would like to avoid such a situation, then we recommend that you look to measure your BMI more intelligently. Just take the time to start looking after yourself and you will start to get a lot more out of your BMI in general. Many people will look to use this number to help determine every part of their lifestyle, but it’s vital to note that there are some serious limitations in the way that BMI operates. We’ll take a look at that in just a moment.

The general management of body weight, though, is that many of us want to see an arbitrary and easy to look at figure. If you can believe that one set of figures can give you the whole picture of your body, then it feels easy and convenient to believe in your BMI. However, it should be noted as clearly as is possible that BMI is not enough – for the reasons we will show you below.

Using it as a tool is not a bad idea, per se. However, if you choose to use it as your only tool then you are very much likely to suffer from a lack of clarity. Let’s look at some reasons why.

The limitations of the Body Mass Index

One of the most common reasons why you need to take a look at BMI with a skeptical view is that BMI does not take into account the importance of fat and muscle. This is not a system that pays attention to your fat or your muscle count. Naturally, this means that someone who has more muscle is going to be in the wrong category.

It’s an often used example, but super athletes in the past like Michael Jordan would have been in the wrong BMI count. They would have been ‘overweight’ as the average person is not cut to shreds with muscle and physical power. As such, since MI cannot differentiate, it can feel like a challenging solution to put all of your belief into.

By the same token, you will find that even those with low fat levels can be overweight according to the BMI. As well as it being the other way around. For example, you might not have a lot of body fat on arms, legs etc. but you could have a round belly. Belly fat is among the most dangerous fats and is likely to be suffocating and damaging organs.

According to your BMI, though, a relatively thin body with a belly would be fit so long as it was only around the belly. However, the longer you live with visceral fats the more likely you are to feel the stress and strain of being overweight. Put simply, BMI cannot take into account the lifestyle that you live.

You might feel fat but your BMI says otherwise. Just as you might feel in the shape of your life but your BMI will say that you have a lot of work to do. Either way, it’s lack of regard and context make it a dangerous tool from an analytical perspective.

So, should I stop following my BMI?

It depends. Alongside other weight management and weight accuracy tools, you can find out a lot using your BMI. However, for the reasons we mentioned until now, it is by no means a catch-all solution. Context is key, and knowing your BMI alone is not contextual enough. Instead, you need to spend a lot of time looking at your BMI and working out where the problems might lie.

For example, you might spend a lot of time trying to stay within the healthy category despite the fact you are actually quite unhealthy. This is a common problem, and one that many people suffer from – if you would like to avoid making such foolish mistakes, then you can do so with relative ease thanks to a change in mind-set.

Instead of using your BMI as a be-all solution, use it as a guiding light. If you merely want to lose weight then yes, it can be a useful tool. If you take part in just about any other kind of body change, though, you might find it hard to make the right kind of impact physically and mentally.

If you were to be carrying a lot of muscle, then it becomes too easy to read the numbers and feel frustrated at being ‘overweight’ for example. As ever, use your BMI as a guiding solution but never the be-all and end-all.