Thursday, February 15, 2007

If I hear this one more time I will scream!!!!

"Since muscle weighs more than fat..." And this is from an MSN article today and that is a quote from an Exercise Physiologist and PROFESSOR at a major university saying it!!!!! It was an article related to the Body Mass Index and how it doesn't take muscle vs. fat into account since it is a height/weight chart. (more on that in a moment)

Which weighs more a pound of lead or a pound of feathers? Anyone - Anyone - Bueller????

They both weigh a POUND!
One is far denser and therefore it takes less of it to make a pound but a pound = a pound regardless of the size of it. In the case of muscle vs. fat - muscle takes up about 5x less space than fat - pound per pound.

I cannot believe that a supposedly educated individual would say something like that in a public manner. It makes me want to scream!

On the BMI - I guess height and weight charts (the ones taken from the old insurance charts) were losing their impact so they decided to repackage the information in the form of a calculation. Requiring thought and calculators must have seemed like a way to have people take their weight more seriously. But height and weight charts will never be an accurate way to assess someone's body composition or "ideal" weight. Muscle makes a difference and you cannot tell me that Tyra Banks looks anything other than awesome! She looks real and looks great - regardless of that BMI.

Want to have an idea of how you are doing - Measure you waist right around the belly button (umbilicus for the latin speakers in the crowd) - Go a step further and measure your hips and calculate your waist to hips ratio.
Is it where you want to be?


Anonymous said...

Concerning fat vs muscle, you said:

"One is far denser and therefore it takes less of it to make a pound".

No it doesn't. Both take the same "amount" to make a pound...namely, a pound.

Maybe you and the exercise physiologist can scream at each other. LOL.

Brett Jones said...

Less of it means - the pile of feathers that makes a pound will be larger than the pile of lead - hence I included the statement that muscle takes up 5x less space than the same amount of fat. I didn't say "amount" - so it would take "less" or a smaller pile of muscle to equal the pile of fat. Yes the weights are the same which is the point of muscle not weighing more than fat - but due to density the piles are different sizes.

Royce said...

I understand what the MSN article was trying to say ( albiet poorly ) though. If you have lots of muscle it contributes to your WEIGHT. If you carry 50 lbs of extra muscle than the "average" the BMI will consider you obese.
At 20 years old I was in the 220 range below 20% fat, I don't remember axactly but like 16-18% wich is considered a healthy range( I am 5'8" ).
I tried to get private insurence since I was self employed and was turned down because the BMI said I was obese.
I also understand where you are coming from it doesn't matter how dense muscle is the BMI doesn't measure density only weight.
Personally I think the BMI should be lumped into the same category as the NFL combine test, grossly outdated.

About Me

My photo
Personal Trainer and Strength Enthusiast Email:

Blog Archive