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More Obese than Thought

Posted on 04/10/2012

A new study out last week suggests the way in which obesity is measured is greatly underestimating the actual number of women in the U.S. who are considered obese.

Almost half of all women currently labeled as not obese by measuring their body mass index (BMI), turned out to be obese when measured by a newer method focusing on their percentage of body fat by weight, the research found.

The researchers say that an accurate measurement of obesity should include percentage of body fat, as well as the ratio of height and weight known as BMI. 

Additionally, if you're counting on looking at your body fat based on BMI, it's unreliable. If you base it on BMI alone, roughly 30 percent of Americans are obese, but when you use other methods, it is closer to 60 percent are obese. Researchers call BMI baloney.

Researchers explain, "that we are fatter than we realize; it's the body fat, not BMI, that makes you obese." Continuing, "the problem is especially seen among women, because as women age, they tend to lose bone and replace muscle with fat."

The research was published in the journal PloS ONE online on April 2nd.

In my opinion, it is extremely difficult to accurately measure body fat unless it is on a corpse or in a water submersion test. I believe other methods might not be as effective or accurate.

Speaking of obesity, the list of the most unhealthy counties in America was released last week. Here are the most obese counties around the country:

10. Pearl River, Miss.
9. Russell, Ala.
8. Scioto, Ohio
7. Cabell, W.V.
6. Halifax, N.C.
5. Walker, Ala.
4. Mercer, W.V.
3. Columbus, N.C.
2. Pike, Ky.
1. Talladega, Ala.

If you or a loved one lives in one of the counties listed above, you don't have to be a statistic. Start small, make changes to your diet and lifestyle to make a huge impact on your health. You can do it, remember, your health is your greatest asset in life...so take good care of it or you won't have it for very long!

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My blog for the week wouldn't be complete without announcing the Seattle Sutton's 2012 Slim Down Contest update: 441.75 pounds lost in just 13 weeks...2 more to go, who will be crowned the Seattle Sutton's 2012 Slim Down winner? Stay tuned, we'll announce the winner in just 2 weeks!

post-author

Seattle Sutton, BSN, RN

She made healthy eating her mission in life long before anyone else did, in hopes of helping her own obese father. A registered nurse by training and entrepreneur at heart, she lives, eats and breathes everything about healthy eating and helping to improve people’s eating habits and overall health. She enjoys never having to bother with grocery shopping, cooking and counting calories. Her favorite SSHE meal, although it’s hard to pick just one, is the Potato Gnocchi with Basil Pesto Sauce.

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