Sunday, February 8, 2009

New BMI guidelines for Indians/South Asians.

Hurray,finally the long wait is over!
I just got to know that the BMI guidelines have been revised back home in India.This happened late last year(how I missed this important news though I spend a good part of my day scanning the Times Of India's online paper, is still a mystery to me).
The Body Mass Index(BMI) is a measure of weight divided by height.
BMI= weight (kg) / [height (m)]2
For years there was a debate with regards to whether the World Health Organisation (WHO) approved BMI parameters which stated a BMI of 30 and above as obese, were correct for Asian populations.
Indians as a race, have been known to have a higher body fat than their western counterparts and until now, using the global standards meant a large part of the population went scott-free even though they were at a greater risk for lifestyle related diseases.
Now,the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare on the advice of the WHO has issued new parameters for Indians:
If the BMI is-
  • <18.5:underweight
  • 18.5-22.9:Normal weight
  • 23-24.9 :Overweight
  • >25 :Obese
So,if you are an Indian(or for that matter of South-Asian origin) and stay overseas,it is important that you bring this change to the notice of your doctor.Chances are that they might not be aware of the change and still use the western BMI parameters on you(literally-"phir bhi dil hain Hindustani")!
For more on this topic:


Yasmeen said...

Thanks for the useful update.Thankfully I'm in the normal range.And thanks for visiting my blog:)

Yasmeen said...

Just checked your comment,I'll link back to your post for sure in my next post.

Tina said...

Shweta, Keep up the gr8 work! Love the recipes ;)

Sweta (My Indian Dietitian) said...

@ Yasmeen,Tina& Indrani-thank u :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks. I'm diabetic and this is very helpful.

Sweta (My Indian Dietitian) said...

@Shovonc- :) Hope you are the 'normal range'

Unknown said...

For me, staying fit has nothing to do with a number. If you are fit. You will know it...

the numbers are of no use, if your BMI is 22.5 and you have high LDL.

stay active is my mantra, not bring BMI to some number.