Is it possible to accurately calculate the weight rate? Pros and cons of different indexes

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Most peo­ple like to eval­u­ate them­selves using var­i­ous tests, for­mu­las and index­es — it is always inter­est­ing to learn some­thing new about your­self. It is not sur­pris­ing that there are many indices in the world for cal­cu­lat­ing nor­mal weight. But does at least one of them give real data on what should be the ide­al weight of a giv­en per­son?

Healthy­in­fo breaks down the four most pop­u­lar ide­al weight cal­cu­la­tion meth­ods and finds out what are their draw­backs and should they be trust­ed?

Body mass index

Body mass index

Body mass index (BMI, BMI) is the most pop­u­lar and best known for­mu­la for esti­mat­ing a per­son­’s body weight. The for­mu­la includes an indi­ca­tor of weight and height: weight in kilo­grams should be divid­ed by the square of height in meters (kg / m2). Accord­ing­ly, we get:

    BMI less than 18.5 kg / m2 — a person is underweight.
    BMI from 18.5 to 24.9 kg / m2 — ideal weight.
    BMI from 25 to 29.9 kg / m2 — overweight.
    BMI over 30 kg/m2 — obesity.

The biggest plus of BMI is its sim­plic­i­ty. Any­one can mea­sure their height and weight with the help of the sim­plest tools that are always at hand.

The biggest dis­ad­van­tage of BMI is that it does not take into account the full vari­ety of vari­a­tions in the human body.

    BMI does not reflect the changes that occur with age, when muscles atrophy, the amount of fat increases, and a person’s height becomes smaller due to degenerative processes in the spine. That is, BMI for older people will show an underestimated result.
    BMI does not take into account the body structure of athletes, in which the percentage of lighter fat is low, and the proportion of heavier muscles is high. BMI for athletes will show an overestimated result.
    Not all BMI calculators offer to indicate the gender of a person. But it is known that a woman with equal height with a man will have more fat, but less muscle, and together the ratio of these tissues will significantly affect the final BMI.

In a 2001 study by a group of sci­en­tists from Italy and Hol­land, it was shown that the sen­si­tiv­i­ty and speci­fici­ty of BMI as a method of deter­min­ing the lev­el of body fat is quite low.

Thus, accord­ing to BMI cal­cu­la­tions, obe­si­ty was detect­ed in 25% of men par­tic­i­pat­ing in the study and in 35% of women. How­ev­er, a sur­vey using the den­sit­o­m­e­try method showed that 8% of men and 7% of women from the total sam­ple who fell into the obe­si­ty group accord­ing to BMI did not actu­al­ly have it, indi­cat­ing a low speci­fici­ty of the method.

When assess­ing the sen­si­tiv­i­ty of BMI, the results were even worse: false-neg­a­tive BMI results were found for 41% of men and 32% of women.

Waist/Hip Index

Waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), or waist/hip index (WHI) is a fair­ly well-known method for assess­ing the degree of abdom­i­nal obe­si­ty, that is, obe­si­ty in which fat is active­ly deposit­ed in the abdomen.

In order to cal­cu­late it, you should mea­sure the waist in its nar­row­est part (if there is none, 2 cm above the navel), and divide the result­ing val­ue by the vol­ume of the hips in their widest part.

The high­er the degree of abdom­i­nal obe­si­ty and the high­er the TTB score, the high­er the risk of devel­op­ing dia­betes and car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease.

Since the fig­ures in men and women have pro­nounced gen­der char­ac­ter­is­tics, FTI should be con­sid­ered sep­a­rate­ly for men and sep­a­rate­ly for women.

For women, the fol­low­ing data can be used:

    FTI less than 0.80 — normal weight.
    FTI from 0.80 to 0.84 — overweight.
    FTI more than 0.85 — obesity.

For men, the results will be as fol­lows:

    FTI less than 0.90 — normal weight.
    FTI from 0.90 to 0.99 — overweight.
    FTI more than 1.00 — obesity.

The most sig­nif­i­cant plus of ITB is the assess­ment of car­diac risk, which is high­ly cor­re­lat­ed with gra­da­tion by weight. In accor­dance with the above data, with nor­mal weight, the risk of devel­op­ing heart and vas­cu­lar dis­eases is low, with excess weight — mod­er­ate, and with obe­si­ty — high. TPI is also used to assess the risk of type 2 dia­betes.

The most sig­nif­i­cant dis­ad­van­tage of ITB is that this indi­ca­tor does not take into account the fea­tures of the human fig­ure. It also does not allow you to esti­mate the per­cent­age of fat in the human body and com­pare it with the pro­por­tion of mus­cle mass.

side­bar

In 2016, sci­en­tists from Malaysia pub­lished an arti­cle in the Inter­na­tion­al Jour­nal of Pre­ven­tive Med­i­cine prov­ing that the mea­sure­ment of waist cir­cum­fer­ence (WC, WC) is a more accu­rate indi­ca­tor of abdom­i­nal obe­si­ty com­pared to FTB. Sci­en­tists explain this by the fact that ITB can be under­es­ti­mat­ed in peo­ple with a high hip cir­cum­fer­ence and over­es­ti­mat­ed if the hip cir­cum­fer­ence, on the con­trary, is small com­pared to the aver­age data (this is espe­cial­ly true for women).

Waist/height index

Waist/height index

The ratio of waist cir­cum­fer­ence to a per­son­’s height, or waist / height index (WTI, WtHR) is anoth­er attempt in a sim­ple way to iden­ti­fy peo­ple with para­me­ters dan­ger­ous to health.

Accord­ing to research in this area, ITR is more effec­tive in pre­dict­ing car­diac risk, the like­li­hood of dia­betes, and all-cause mor­tal­i­ty than BMI or even ITB.

The cri­te­ria is very sim­ple:

    if the ratio of waist circumference to height is 0.5 or less, then the person has a normal weight;
    if the MRI is greater than 0.5, this indicates the presence of risks to his health.

Advan­tages of mea­sur­ing MRI: sim­ple and con­ve­nient for approx­i­mate risk assess­ments of devel­op­ing heart and vas­cu­lar dis­eases, as well as dia­betes mel­li­tus.

Cons of ITR: all the same as for oth­er indices. The fea­tures of the fig­ure and phys­i­cal activ­i­ty of a per­son are not tak­en into account.

Brock’s formula

In order to cal­cu­late the weight norm accord­ing to Brock­’s for­mu­la, it is enough to sub­tract a cer­tain fig­ure from your height. And which one depends on growth:

    If you are 165 cm or less: Subtract 100 from your height.
    With a height of 166–175 cm: subtract 105 from the height.
    With a height of 176 cm or more: subtract 110 from the height.

But that’s not all! Con­sid­er what type of physique a per­son has. And as you know, there are three of them (main): asthen­ics (thin and tall), nor­mas­then­ics (har­mo­nious), hyper­s­then­ics (mas­sive and low). Then, when using Bro­ca’s for­mu­la, after sub­tract­ing the cor­rect fig­ure, it fol­lows:

    Asthenics deduct another 10%.
    Normostenics — do not change anything.
    Hypersthenics — add 10% on top.

But this still does not give the final val­ue. Because peo­ple come in dif­fer­ent ages, and, as men­tioned ear­li­er, their height and, to some extent, physique depend on age. There­fore, plus every­thing fol­lows:

    For young people aged 20–30 years — further reduce the calculated figure by 10%.
    People aged 40–45 years — do not change anything.
    Elderly people over 50 years old — add 5–7% on top.

The idea of ​​Brock­’s for­mu­la is good: take into account age, body type, fea­tures of the fig­ure with dif­fer­ent heights — and this is a plus of this for­mu­la. It is already dif­fi­cult to call it sim­ple, giv­en the numer­ous edits that occur in the process.

There is a slight­ly sim­pli­fied mod­ern ver­sion of Brock­’s for­mu­la using a fac­tor of 1.15:

    To calculate the weight of a woman, it is necessary: ​​subtract 110 from height and multiply the resulting number by 1.15.
    To calculate the weight of a man, you need to subtract 100 from height and multiply the resulting number by 1.15.

The minus of Brock­’s for­mu­la is just in too many nuances, and also in the fact that in this case it is impos­si­ble to take into account the ratio of fat and mus­cles. The same ath­letes, preg­nant ladies and girls under 18, for exam­ple, will again be out­side the norm.

con­clu­sions

    There is no ideal formula for calculating the “correct” weight with a minimum of data and measuring instruments. People are too different.
    All these methods give very approximate results, especially at the borders of the ranges. Especially for people who are somehow different from the average person — height, health, body condition, etc.
    Nevertheless, these indices are quite suitable for understanding: the risks of heart and vascular diseases, diabetes and other dangerous diseases are already too high, and something needs to be done with extra pounds.
    A more accurate result can be obtained by measuring the proportion of fat and muscle in the body.

Com­par­i­son of select­ed body com­po­si­tion para­me­ters in women using DXA and anthro­po­met­ric method. / Grze­gor­czyk J, Woloszyn N, Perenc L. // J Res Med Sci­ence - 2019 Aug - 28;24:70

Abdom­i­nal Obe­si­ty Indi­ca­tors: Waist Cir­cum­fer­ence or Waist-to-hip Ratio in Malaysian Adults Pop­u­la­tion. / Ahmad N, et al. // Int J Prev Med. - 2016 - 7:82

BMI-relat­ed errors in the mea­sure­ment of obe­si­ty. / Roth­man KJ. // Int J Obes (Lond). - 2008 Aug - 32 Sup­pl 3:S56‑9.

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The valid­i­ty of pre­dict­ed body fat per­cent­age from body mass index and from imped­ance in sam­ples of five Euro­pean pop­u­la­tions. / Deuren­berg, P., Andreoli, A., Borg, P. et al. // Eur J Clin Nutr - 2001 - 55

By Yraa

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