New research suggests that the BMI measurement might be underestimating obesity. Slowly the nation reaches for its Snuggy and begins to weep.
According to the study, the BMI or Body Mass Index measurement might be missing up to 40% of obesity cases because quite frankly our old standard of measurement can’t factor in just how fat we’ve gotten. We have collectively broken the scale, so to speak. This happens a lot with people who have lost a lot of muscle mass – especially older women. The BMI mis-identifies excess fat as muscle.
“BMI is the least accurate test in medicine,” says Eric Braverman, one of the authors of the study. “It’s been around since 1832 and hasn’t changed. People are being told their BMI is [a healthy] 24, when their body fat is actually at 34 percent, which is obese.”
This becomes important when BMI is a determining factor on who gets treated for obesity and who doesn’t. Doctors are urging the medical community to move towards more accurate DXA (Dual Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry) tests.
(Source: US News)