If you’ve been to a doctor’s office or fitness center in recent years, you’ve likely had your Body Mass Index calculated. The BMI formula uses a person’s weight in kilograms divided by the square of their height in meters. The resulting number is classified into one of four categories: underweight, normal weight, overweight, or obese. These labels are prolific in the U.S. medical system. At one point, BMI classification was even used to establish eligibility for COVID vaccines.
Earlier this month, the American Medical Association voted to move away from using BMI as a measurement to assess weight and health. The calculation is problematic for many reasons. To understand why, you must first understand its history.
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June 28, 2023