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Those With Normal BMIs May Still Carry Too Much Fat

Posted Sep 22 2008 10:04am

The Mayo Clinic warns that people with a normal body mass index (BMI) may still need to be concerned about obesity.

BMI is the ratio of height to weight, and it is often used to determine whether or not someone is overweight.  Dr. Francisco Lopez-Jimenez and colleagues at the Mayo Clinic recently reported that people with normal BMIs that still have excess body fat were more likely to have high cholesterol and extra body fat, which are both characteristics of metabolic syndrome.

Lopez-Jimenez calls the condition “normal-weight obesity”, and it was found in 61% of a sample of 2,127 men and women with normal BMIs.  Francisco says that “it normally comes down to exercise.”  He recommends that people should perform both strength training and aerobic workouts.

I recently posted about the growing levels of obesity in the US.  However, it seems like being normal weight may not be enough.  However, I have never put much stock in the BMI.  It does not account for muscle mass, which weighs more than body fat.  Therefore, muscular people may have high BMIs, while people with “normal-weight obesity” will have acceptable BMIs.

Reference:  MedLine Plus

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