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Just went for my wellwoman check and got weighted and measured. The Nurse didn't comment on my weight, but I worked out my BMI when I got back and was shocked it was 28, which is well in to overweight.
I exercise regularly and probably eat too much cake. I'm a size 14-16. I wouldlike to be thinner than I am but I have stayed the same size since my last baby without starving myself. Do you take notice of BMI? If not what else do you use to assess whether you are a healthy weight.
Yes I do take it seriously. There are always people who dismisses BMI because serious athletes also have very high BMI because of their muscle mass. The truth is where you carry your weight is very important. Basically if it's around your middle, it's a bad thing. But if you are all over muscly like an athlete then it's nothing to worry about. (You'd probably also know if you are fit like an athlete)!
Dexter73 - must take you up on that! I am 14-16 and BMI is 26 so yes slightly over weight - I am 6ft Tall, I don't carry my weight in a particular area of my body - I am broad shoulder and wide hipped.
In my adult life I have never been lighter than 13st 4 (believe me I have tried everything) - I was a size 14 then.
I would agree that you should take notice. 28 is not just slightly overweight. It is edging towards the obese category. If you are an elite athlete you can chalk up BMI as useless because your % muscle will be so high - but that would involve significant time and energy spent on exercise and few people (despite wishful thinking) are actually in the category where they can discount BMI. To help you understand where you should focus your energies on, body fa t% and waist size measurement could also be good. There is some research to say that you are better being slightly overweight and fit, than slim/underweight and unfit. But a BMI of 28 doesn't sound in the 'slightly category. Sorry if that all sounds harsh - it's not meant to be.
BMI is a very blunt tool. You can be slim and muscular yet have high internal levels of fat. it doesn't measure harmful cholesterol and doesn't take into account body composition. Imagine Kate Moss has a very low BMI yet imagine her actual health and body age would be pretty awful considering her smoking/alcohol/lifestyle/drugs...
Waist measurement CAN be a good indicator, but not on its own. I'm an apple, carry ALL my weight on my tummy, with a mid range BMI for my height and an unhealthy waist measurement. Even at my slimmest (and unhealthiest as my periods stopped) my waist measurement was not 'healthy'.
Isn't it all about what's healthy for you? Eat healthily and exercise. If the nurse didn't even mention it I wouldn't worry, but if you're at all concerned focus on eating cleanly for a while.
Which is exactly why a range of indicators can be the most helpful. If you measure worryingly on one but you feel/look healthy, then double check how you are on the others (waist/BMi/body fat %). If you are outside the normal range (in either direction) on all of them, I would suggest that there is something that needs addressing if you want to be healthy..
Notyummy has pretty much summed it up and mignonette, you are right, it is a blunt tool and a healthy BMI does not necessarily = healthy body, (although if you are slim and muscular it is unlikely that you have a high % of fat, unlike "skinny fat" people), but for the majority of us BMI is a very useful indicator of unhealthy/healthy weight, so it should not be ignored.
"Ok but I would imagine that a person who is a size 14/16 is overweight."
When I was this size I was underweight according to my BMI. Dress size is a bit meaningless, because your height and frame makes a difference - all a dress size is is shorthand for a set of waist, hip and bust measurements.
I know I need to lose a stone for starters, my BMI is 27, but I also feel much fitter and healthier than I did a year ago when I was probably slightly lighter. (I went heavier and have lost 9lbs so far).
Firstly, my mental health is much better as I am not too stressed. I can do 40 minutes + of cardio in the gym, and not just faffing about on a bike reading a magazine either - running, rowing, cross trainer and exercise bike, with my heart rate at 80% of maximum.
I have started running again and can now jog for 4.5 miles. My resting heart rate is around 50, (apparently like that of a 18 year old male athlete, though some of it is genetic) my blood pressure is between 90/45 and 100/60. My waist measurement is 28, I am size 14, so not a problem in the diabetes stakes.
I don't suffer from colds and ill health now. I get a sniffle, sore throat or tickly cough for a few days tops. A year ago when I was stressed out I was getting everything under the sun including IBS. The IBS symptoms have stopped completely.
So yes I would like to lose weight but I am generally (very) healthy I think, much fitter than the average person. You have to look at the whole picture. Getting my head in the right place has been a priority for me, being kinder to myself. Exercise has been part of that, but sometimes I have had to take a step back from it- for example doing loads of cardio exercise and running was too much for my body when I was stressed out with work, it didn't help at all, I was exhausted mentally and physically and just kept getting ill. Balance is required.
Op at least you are aware of your BMI now and can make the decision if you want to do something about it. Last year I had a bmi of 34 and weighed 13 and a half stone. It took 8 months to get down to 9 stone and a bmi of 23.