Knowing your body shape-not just your weight-may be the key to better health.
By Kelly DiNardo
Photo: Adam VoorhesFor more than 40 years, scientists have searched for a simple formula for determining who's healthy and who's not. First there was body mass index (BMI), which compares weight with height, but doesn't account for lean muscle mass or bone density. It also doesn't indicate where you carry your weight, an important factor in understanding your overall health. As a result, doctors began embracing waist circumference (WC) as a measure of the dangerous body fat that settles around the belly. But WC, too, can fall short-for failing to factor height into the equation: A 5'10" woman with a 35-inch waist may have a very different health profile from a 5'2" woman with the same girth.
Given rising rates of chronic disease associated with obesity, it's no wonder that the medical community has been laboring to come up with a better metric. Now a father-and-son team-Jesse Krakauer, MD, anRead More »from The Next BMI? the Number You Need to Know for Better Health