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Folly of Height/Weight Charts
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Overweight and Obese are Society's Labels - Not Mine

Distinctions such as overweight or obese are society's labels, they do not define who you are. People come in all sizes and shapes. Height/Weight charts are woefully inadequate as a basis for measuring true health, yet we've relied on them for decades as a measure of truth. Since they don't take body composition (ratio of muscle to fat) a body builder or elite athlete will be considered overweight (according to the charts) because they will weigh more than the charts suggest they should. The athlete's higher percentage of muscle and lower percentage of fat indicates an increased level of fitness, not overweight.

Consider two men, one a body builder who is 6'2" and weighs 210 lbs. His bodyfat is 7%, so roughly he has 14.7 lbs of fat and 195.30 lbs of muscle. The other fellow is 6'2" and weighs 200 lbs. He plays a weekend game of golf and otherwise works behind a desk and is 22% fat. That means our 200 lb. fellow has 44 lbs of fat and 156 lbs of muscle. Obviously the 200 lb. man is much wider than the 210 lb. man, because muscle is more dense, and fat is bulky. Remember the wheelbarrow Oprah used to show the volume 40 lb. fat took? Imagine carrying that around with you. Go to the store and pick up a 1 lb. package of beef and compare it to a 1 lb. package of lard. You'll see the difference.

Additionally the height/weight chart values are too high for short people and too low for tall, yet they are used even in most doctor's offices. The charts were designed to give the insurance industry guidelines for writing death policies. They were based on the weights of average men and had nothing whatsoever to do with health and/or fitness. In fact, there never could be standard height/weight charts because there would need to be such a large variety of charts,it would render the whole point moot. See Hall MD for excellent information on the height/weight charts.

If you do exercise, or even build muscle the chart may suggest you are too heavy. You might even hear your own doctor suggest you lose weight. Trust yourself to know what's best for you. Your true health is based on how healthy you are inside and out, your level of physical fitness, your well being. Just because some height/weight chart says you are not of the norm, i.e. overweight, doesn't make it so.

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Kathryn Martyn M.NLP
Kathryn Martyn Smith, M.NLP EFT Weight Loss Coach
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