Why is this important?
- American Indians and Alaska Natives experience high rates of overweight and obesity.
- Obesity increases the risk for type 2 diabetes, HTN, elevated lipids, CVD, CKD, pregnancy complication and degenerative joint disease.
- Individuals with a BMI ≥30 kg/m2 are more likely to develop diabetes.
- Waist circumference is a practical tool to evaluate a patient’s abdominal fat.
- Skinfolds are a method to determine the subcutaneous fat layer thickness; a pinch of skin is precisely measured by calipers at standardized points.
Body Mass Index
- Body Mass Index (BMI) is an indirect measure of body fatness.
- Ranges for BMI (kg/m2):
- Underweight is defined as below 18.5
- Normal is between 15.5 and 24.9
- Overweight is defined as 25.0 to 29.9
- Obese is ≥30
- Waist circumference (WC) is used to evaluate abdominal fat.
- Increased health risks are found at:
- >40 inches (>102 cm) for men
- >35 inches (>88 cm) for women
- The skinfold measure itself (in millimeters) is the principle outcome measure to gauge responsiveness to lifestyle therapy (weight loss).
- Skinfold fat is precisely measured at several standardized sites on the body; preferred sites are either the subscapular or triceps.
- Skinfold measures are not to be used for screening but as a serial measure of adiposity change between patient visits.
- Results may vary if measurements are not consistently taken at the exact locations.