## How Body Mass Index Works – Set Your Weight Loss Goals

Written by Robb Ksiazek

Many people want to lose a few of those annoying pounds, but they just don’t know where to start. If only there was some sort of guide that would help dieters to set goals. Body mass index, or BMI, creates an opportunity for weight loss enthusiasts to determine their ideal body weight in order to set their goals.

The index uses your body height and weight to determine problem areas in your weight. Underweight, normal, overweight, and obese are categories index uses for classification. The categories have their individual implications as regarded to health and wellbeing.

How is BMI Calculated?

BMI calculations use a simple formula that can be figured with a traditional calculator, or pen and paper for that matter. The body mass index formula = kg/m2. In layman’s terms, your weight in kilograms is divided by your height in meters squared. The customary or English measurement formula = (lb/in2) x 703 or weight in pounds divided by height in inches squared all multiplied by 703. It’s really not as complicated as it sounds. Try it for yourself.

Interpreting Index – What it all Means

Your BMI calculation will produce an index somewhere between 14 and 30 or so. You will be categorized as follows:

Below 18.5= Underweight

18.5 – 24.9 = Normal

25.0 – 29.9 = Overweight

30 and Above=Obese

Some BMI charts will break categories down even further, but this table is most common. Children’s body mass index takes age and maturity into account.

The index for body mass was created to evaluate level of risk associated with chronic health problems. There is a direct link to your BMI and certain serious health conditions, such as: heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, and high cholesterol.

## Anabolic Hormones - A Two-Edged Sword

Written by Dr. Randy Wysong

When I was a young boy, emerging muscles were coolest thing. If a vein popped out a little, that was even more awesome. There were no fitness centers or body building gyms to amount to anything back then (Stone Age). If you aspired to brawn, Charles Atlas paraphernalia advertised in comic books was guaranteed to help you turn cards on guy who kicked sand in your face on beach last summer. Back then, muscles seemed more legitimate if you earned them from work on farm or from other labor. Muscles from exercise were thought of as sort of “artificial”. So I did lots of farm work and construction in summers. But leaving nothing to chance, I also cheated by building my own weight set with a pipe that I would insert into holes of cement blocks. My dad was of school that I had better be careful or I could get all “muscle bound” if I exercised too much. I guess he must have worried as he saw me in back yard hoisting my pipe with blocks dangling from each end. But I loved exercise and reveled in pumped feeling in my biceps.

Sorry to sound so narcissistic. But it’s way all of us “guys” thought. We would even compare bumps on school bus every morning and banter about who could do most push-ups. This is not to say muscles and fitness are still not important to me, but now I focus primarily on exercise that will help me stay healthy, in shape and trained for competitive sports I play.

I bring this up not to brag or appall you, but as a backdrop for current situation in sport and bodybuilding worlds. Now that society is off farm, exercise has become a perfectly legitimate way to replace physical activity lost with modern living. The use of hormones to force body to grow in a way it would never do naturally, however, is a perversion of what should be clean and healthy personal development. Anabolic hormones totally miss point of it all. The freaky bodies that can result are aberrations, yet magazines are filled with their photo spreads as if drug induced bodies are icons we should emulate and aspire to.

Aside from fact that only people with natural bodies and developed talents should compete in sports (otherwise drugs are competing, not athletes), real tragedy is toll on health any hormone can take. Of all drugs I used in medical practice, hormones scared me most. They could create dramatic and immediate results (and that is their allure), but hormone treatment continued for any length of time always seemed to come back to harm patient and haunt me.

An example in humans is use of testosterone patches in women to increase libido. Take them very long and although your passion may be triggered, your voice will deepen and a beard will start to grow (not so good for libido of husband). Corticosteroids for allergies can result in extremely serious adrenal gland diseases, immune suppression and vulnerability to infection. In veterinary medicine same things can happen. One situation I am reminded of that occurred many years ago was related to hormones given to dogs for birth control. Years after discontinuing drugs, treated dogs would present to veterinarians with life threatening illness, extreme thirst and white blood cell counts off charts. When their enlarged abdomens were surgically explored, a gigantic uterus would be found filled with pus – quarts of it! All this just because a little ole hormone was given years ago without a hint of an immediate ill effect.

You see, body is extremely wise. It is not fooled or endlessly forgiving. If you break your arm and put it in a sling, muscles don’t grow bigger, they atrophy. Why? Because body is also efficient. Why grow muscles or even maintain them if they are not needed? When sling is removed, arm will have lost much of its strength. The body shuttled its resources into building bigger muscles in arm that had to do double duty. It’s a very pragmatic thing. The body doesn’t pay attention to your agenda; it just does what it must to stay alive, make do and meet stress.

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