Tag Archives: belly fat

What BMI stand for

Gentle Reader,

I was browsing my kick-ass fitness coach daughter, Priscilla Bell’s Survivor page on Face Book and today I am going to share a post she sent her followers.  You might agree. You will certainly gain a new perspective on BMI.  What BMI stands for really is the topic.  Here goes.

 BMI      Basically Meritless IndicatorPriscilla

 If you don’t know what BMI means it is a simple (and inaccurate) way to assess if someone is overweight or obese by measuring height, weight and age.  As some of you know any calculation that uses age as an indicator of fitness drives me crazy. So at 49 your not fat but at 50 you are? Really?  When  the National Institutes of Health  began using the BMI formula suddenly overnight twenty-five million Americans instantly went from being at a healthy weight to being overweight.

 Astonishingly the below incident happened on Friday…this past Friday, March 27th, 2015…as reported by ABC News:

A Missouri mother is livid after her daughter came home from elementary school with a note saying that her body fat index was too high despite her lean frame.

“She goes, ‘Does this mean I’m fat?’ 

Moss’s daughter Kylee is 7 years old, 54 pounds, 3-foot-10.

Belton School District Superintendent Andrew Underwood told ABC News. “We do the body mass index on our students for positive reasons to try to promote healthy habits as far as what the kids eat and their activity,” Underwood said. 

When contacted by ABC Dr. Naveen Uli, a pediatric endocrinologist, said ‘BMI is a controversial measurement because it does not distinguish muscle mass from fat mass’. He also said “[I]t may in fact be psychological[ly punishing, since school personnel may not be familiar with details regarding that child’s health,”

Yes, that’s what we need – more kids stressed about how they look and maybe even developing an eating disorder because of it.

Belly fat is the most dangerous kind.  You can be at a satisfactory weight and still carry a significant amount of weight around your middle and the BMI calculation doesn’t measure that. The trouble with belly fat is that it’s not limited to the extra layer of padding located just below the skin (subcutaneous fat). It also includes visceral fat – which lies deep inside your abdomen, surrounding your internal organs.  Regardless of your overall weight, having a large amount of belly fat increases your risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, stroke and sleep apnea.  And I do believe that those are the health risks that matter. When Arnold Schwarzenegger was Mr. Universe, his BMI was well into the obese range.  True story.  The really scary thing is that people of influence, namely doctors, are still using the BMI index to assess whether or not a person is overweight.

Here’s the formula that I am going to suggest the National Institutes of Health use: Stand like your going to ask your boss for a raise, preferrably wearing tighter clothing, which actually might be the way you ask for a raise but I’m not going to judge.  Now drop your chin to your chest but do not lean forward.  Look down. Can you see your feet?  Both feet entirely? Just your toes? Or are you asking yourself ‘what feet’?  There you have it. Belly fat is the only reason why any health organization should care about why carrying extra weight can be a problem.  And it has nothing to do with a formula that calculates your height, weight and age.

She finishes the article with this:

Dear extra fat in my body.  

You have two options:

make your way to my boobs,

or GTFO.

 That’s my daughter, yes siree.  If you want to browse her site, take a look.  I would probably die in one of her classes.  Her addendum is this:

The simplest diet changes are just that, simple.

More protein and vegetables, less refined carbohydrates.  That’s all you need to know, it’s not complicated.

simple diet

Be well, Do well and Keep Moving,


206 933 1889

Comments:  I’d love to hear them. Priscilla is 52, BTW, and has four teenagers.  And a husband.


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Get out the tape measure!

Gentle Reader,

Here we go into the season ‘tis jolly with food and good cheer!’   It will not be popular to talk about belly fat being the death of you.  How has Santa survived all these years?

I keep harping on ‘keep moving.’  It turns out that even if you are at your ideal weight and your tummy is sticking out, that fat sitting there is dangerous.  You must keep moving to stay alive.  Moving includes not only cardio but also ab strengthening.

I struggle with that myself.  Is this pooch a wheat belly (see my post on Celiac disease) or is it excess fat that needs to be exercised into muscle.  The facts are in, so if you want to know just how serious this is, read on.

This picture is Crissie Bessinger, blogger about ways to avoid gluten with recipes and guidance.  Her blogs are here.


Belly fat increases the risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes.
Here’s the research, and I want to thank Dr. Stephen Chaney for passing this on to me.


A group of scientists at the National Institutes of Health recently analyzed data collected from 44,000 women in the Nurses’ Health Study over a 16-year period and asked if abdominal obesity affected their death rates from heart disease and cancer (Zhang et al, Circulation, 117: 1658-1667, 2008).

The answer was a clear-cut yes!

The study showed that women with a waist circumference of 35 inches were twice as likely to die from heart disease and cancer than women with a waist circumference of 28 inches – even if they were at ideal body weight.

But you might be asking “How can they be at ideal body weight and still have abdominal obesity?”

There is a natural tendency to lose muscle mass as we age. When we add in the inactivity associated with the American lifestyle that loss of muscle mass is accelerated and the muscle is replaced with fat.

Thus, it is actually possible in today’s world to have both normal weight and abdominal obesity – and that is not a good thing!

This gal looks good.  You’d be glad to have her figure, right?  Her excess belly fat is not healthy.

Of course, the women who were both overweight and had abdominal obesity were even more likely to die from heart disease or cancer.

So it is not just about not looking good in your bathing suit – abdominal obesity is a killer!

However, the good news is that you can do something about abdominal obesity.

A combination of exercise, a healthy diet and the “180 Turnaround Plan” is a proven way of getting rid of that unsightly belly fat forever.  Stay tuned for this 180 Turnaround Plan.  Details to follow.  Please get in touch if you are interested in learning more.

My current waist is 31 inches.  I’d like to get that down 2 inches.  Anyone want to join me?  It’s more fun together.

Take Action:  Leave a comment, perhaps even your waist measurement.  Go ahead.  This is a protected website and can’t be hacked into by just any one.

Call me.  I’ll let you know when the shopping page has these products available.  January 1.  If you can’t stand to wait that long, the Cinch products we’ve been using all along are available now, here.

Get going on some abdominal strengthening exercises.  Here is a youtube video by Amy Goodman.  I’ll have to think about this series.  Looks hard.  I think I’ll try it.

Fondly, Betsy

Be Well, Do Well and Keep Moving

BetsyBell’s Health4u


206 933 1889  1 888 283 2077



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