(Closed) Anyone else hate how the BMI labels your weight class?

posted 8 years ago in Wellness
Post # 3
Member
2205 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2009

my husband hates the BMI.  He a little bit broader…and he would like to lose 10-15 pounds but no one that would meet him would say, oh you need to lose weight.  But his BMI puts him well into the obese category which is so ridiculous and frustrating!

Post # 4
Member
11327 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2011

I find the labels really shocking too. I am in the same situation where I know I need to lose weight but I’m really not THAT big. I’m 5’6″ and a size 14. Bigger? yes. Huge? definitely not. Yet when I did my BMI, I was “obese” and it was really hard to see. 

I just figure… that is the clinical term. We like to think of obese people as those who can’t walk up a flight of stairs. I can run a 5k. Yet… I have weight to lose and I need to do it. 

Post # 5
Member
326 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

Aww – thats tough. I know this doesn’t quite apply – but when I was pregnant I gained a TON of weight. My doctor told me I was clinically obese in a very judgemental tone…my doctor was TWICE the size I was pregnant! That ticked me off pretty good!

Unfortunatley, I’m still just around the same weight after giving birth 3 years ago…bummer. I know I need the help. But having someone else comment on it is pretty hard to swallow. I feel ya girl!

Good luck on your weight loss journey! I’m working on mine as well!

Post # 6
Member
362 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2010

YES!!  I was in the obese category until very recently (now I’m a 29.8 – HA!) but it still really bugs me.  I know I’m somewhat overwight but I’m very tall and I carry a lot of muscle on my frame.  According to BMI, I should weigh around 130-145 pounds in order to be “ideal” which is ridiculous.  I would look emaciated!

To me, it’s more important to be healthy than to weight a certain weight.  I have friends that are in their “ideal” weight range but eat nothing but junk food and never exercise but they don’t get flak when they go to the dr because they aren’t overweight.  Blah… It drives me crazy sometimes 😛

Post # 7
Member
548 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

It makes me nuts, too. I spent a few years in the clinically obese category (at 5’7″ and size 12!). I was “obese” when we got engaged, and lost about 15 pounds before the wedding… does this look like someone 15 pounds away from obesity?

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Post # 8
Member
83 posts
Worker bee

I have the same problem. People look at me and generally guess I weigh about 50 pounds lighter than I actually am! Or maybe they’re being kind about it… who knows?Either way, I’m considered obese by BMI but I have enough stamina to be on the exercise bike for an hour before needing to stop, and go for 5 hour walks before I’m tired. And my legs are practically all muscle, which weighs a lot more than fat does. The doctors I’ve seen put me in the “overweight” category and totally disregard the BMI (which makes me feel a little better about it).

On some level, I really really really wish I were petite at about 125 pounds; probably because I was picked on as a kid all the time about being fat and my parents also told me I was fat all the time (Chinese upbringing and I wasn’t a stick) so it’s always going to be nagging at me forever. 

I also hate clothing sizes. Any man who’s my size would be overweight and wearing a medium to large size. If he didn’t care about showing his gut, he could get away with a small. Me? As a woman, I’m an X-large. That does great things for my self esteem! There’s something wrong with this system!

Post # 9
Member
5494 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: August 2011

I’m sorry that you feel so frustrated about this.  the thing is, “obese” has been used in our daily vocabulary to indicate someone who is perceived to be outrageously large.  However, obse also has a medical definition and that is what is being refered to when the BMI labels the category as “obese”. 

Obese: Well above ones normal weight. A person has traditionally been considered to be obese if they are more than 20 percent over their ideal weight. That ideal weight must take into account the person’s height, age, sex, and build.  Obesity has been more precisely defined by the National Institutes of Health (the NIH) as a BMI of 30 and above.

It’s tough because there is definitely another widely spread definition associated with it and you can’t help but take it to heart, but try not to let the word effect you too much.

Post # 10
Member
979 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2010

I am somehow the opposite.  I have a normal BMI but I really should be considered overweight.

Post # 11
Member
548 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2009

@meowkers: That’s part of the problem… the other part is that BMI doesn’t take build into consideration. I read that, for this reason, the basketball player Shaquille O’Neal is obese if you judge by his BMI – he’s got lots of muscle and relatively little body fat, but the height/weight formula used to calculate BMI doesn’t take that into account.

Post # 12
Member
83 posts
Worker bee

That’s right. BMI does not consider build at all. And basically, if you have any muscle whatsoever, it’s inaccurate. But they can’t make a 3 or 4 dimensional chart, so they just left it at 2 – weight and height. Well OK, they could, but they couldn’t print it on paper easily.

And it’s so hard not to take it to heart when everything you see and hear around you is fat children, and super skinny models and model wannabes. Everything reminds you of weight and size.

Post # 13
Member
2004 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: November 2008

I agree with the remarks on how it’s not an accurate label for people with various builds, etc.

This is connected to a larger issue of the effect of labeling on one’s psyche. When you go to a psychologist and they diagnose you with major depressive disorder, or bipolar disorder, or borderline personality disorder or schizophrenia, those labels can be really hard to get over. Even hearing that someone has been diagnosed with one of those disorders can change your impressions of them in ways that may not be consistent with reality. It’s so frustrating…these terms can describe meaningful constructs but the stigma attached to them really stinks.

Post # 14
Member
990 posts
Busy bee

I’m with you on this! I’m obese, as well! Just crossed into the category about a month ago. It disgusts me. I’m overweight, chubby, heavy even. But not obese. I’m 5’9″, between sizes 12 and 14. I refuse to believe that is obese!

Post # 15
Member
310 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2011

I am a 28 on the BMI, which is ridiculous because I am 5’8″ and about 160 pounds, a size 10-12. I have no fat on my back (yet…yippee!) and my shoulders and arms are so incredibly bony, I’d probably die if I got down to “suggested weight.” It makes me mad too! I carry my weight VERY well and people always guess I weigh about 130 or so. If I was in my  suggested weight, I’d look sick! I got down to 143 before, during my first year of college, and my mother thought I was on my death bed! I looked SO emaciated. The BMI needs to be reevaluated, I think.

And @wbride — what? you were considered OBESE 15 pounds ago? what???

Post # 16
Member
937 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2009

I’m 1 lb away from being in the overweight category. I know I’m not big or anything… but just the thought is slightly depressing! Like firemanslady said, maybe I carry my weight well 🙂

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