We got to talking about weight gain (since it is always on the mind of expectant mothers) and I chatted with her about my personal weight loss goals for the year, which are going along pretty well. And although the scales are moving backwards very slowly but surely, my body is looking firmer and feeling stronger by the day, which I love more than any number on a scale. And then she posed a very thought provoking question to me, which was - why do I feel like I need to be a certain number on a scale? I gave her my BMI rant and explained that it is one area that I feel like I have struggled to maintain control over and it bothers me. Okay, she said, but rather than it being based on a BMI number why don't you make it goal around fitting into something for Summer or Spring that you already own, something that may be tight at the moment? Hmmmm....my mind was ticking. 'You do know,' she went on, 'that BMI is really outdated and fails to measure many other important health indicators right?' Ah, no, not really. Okay so this lead me into a deep dive, was this true? Is BMI outdated, is true health measured in other ways? And if so, in what ways?
Turns out, she is bloody well right. Physicians all over the world are seriously questioning the usefulness of BMI. For a start it was created in the 19th century, which makes it seriously outdated and out of touch with what a real measurement of health actually is, and it does not account for age, sex, ethnicity, genetics or gender. It was popularised in the 1970's when thin was in, and yet it still continues to dominate as a health measure today. In fact there a number of other health metrics that are now giving physicians a far more accurate measure of what health is and these are the things that you should be paying attention to when measuring your own health levels:
A larger waist circumference - one greater than 35 inches (85cm) in women or 40 inches (101.6cm) in men - indicates greater body fat in the abdominal area, which is associated with a higher risk of chronic disease.
Hip to Waist Ratio:
A high ratio (greater than 0.80 in women or greater that 0.95 in men) indicates higher fat stores in the stomach area and is linked to a greater risk of heart disease and chronic disease. A low ratio (lower than or equal to 0.80 in women or lower that or equal to 0.95 in men) suggests higher hip fat storage which is associated with better health.
A normal blood pressure reading is between 120/80 mmHg and 129/84 mmHg. Having a high blood pressure raises your risk of heart attack, stroke, kidney damage, vision problems and sexual dysfunction.
A normal resting heart rate for adults ranges from 60 to 100 beats per minute. Find yourself over that and you're at risk of heart failure, stroke and even sudden cardiac death.
For a healthy population, your cholesterol should be less than 5.5 mmol/L. A high cholesterol reading can lead to narrowing arteries, heart attack, stroke, mini stroke or peripheral heart disease.
Blood Glucose Levels:
A normal range of fasting blood glucose levels is between 70 and 100 mg/dL. Everyone knows that diabetes is a serious problem with a multitude of health related risks attached. If you have high blood glucose readings you could find yourself with a diagnosis for diabetes.
How does your body feel? Do you have a lot of injuries, pain, aches, physical symptoms that are debilitating or detrimental to your ability to function well? If you are suffering from recurring or persistent inflammation anywhere in your body, this can be an indication of poor health.
How's your head space and your mindset? Do you have a positive outlook and a sunny disposition or are you struggling with your mental wellbeing, wellness and general lust for life? Mental health is a serious component of overall health and can have detrimental effects on many other parts of the body and lead to physical symptoms and inflammation if it goes unchecked.
Diet and Water Intake:
You are what you eat and unfortunately if you eat and drink crap you will feel like crap and your body will get ill. What you put into your body will determine how well it will run, how effective your immune system will function and how much energy you will have to face the day, so be discerning and eat properly and wisely.
People that sleep better live longer and have less health problems overall. Your body not only rests when you are sleeping, it heals itself as well and sleep is vital to tissue repair and the regeneration of healthy cells. If you aren't getting 6-8 quality hours of sleep a night, you may find yourself with some serious health issues as a consequence.
The good news for me is, that I pass on all of those other tests. I am within the normal range of each of those other health indicators, which is super good news for my wellbeing. Does this now mean that I no longer want to lose a few kilos? Nah, I still want to, but not to reach a certain number on the scale so much anymore, but just for my own satisfaction. Zoe said to me -do you really think that people are going to stand around at your funeral and say "if only she was a stone lighter, we would've loved her so much more!" Which, when you really think about it is pretty funny and totally true. It is fine to want to lose some weight, but the people who really love you the most are going to love you bones and all no matter what, and there is a great deal of comfort to be found in that knowledge.
Release Date: 2022
Rating: MA 15+
Running Time: 121 mins
A romantic horror directed by Luca Guadagnino and based on the 2015 novel of the same name by Camille DeAngelis. Bones and All unpacks a fresh horror perspective as well as a coming of age love story in one foul swoop.
It's the late 80's and Maren, a teenager, finds herself abandoned by her father when she acts on her increasing hard to ignore cannibalistic tendencies. On the run and searching to discover the true nature of who and what she is, Maren bumps into some of her own kind which has both delightful and disastrous consequences.
Not for the faint-hearted, Bones and All delivers something equal parts repellent and compelling. The acting here is incredibly good with Timothee Chalamet, Taylor Russell and Mark Rylance bringing stunning and genuine performances all round. The overall effect is seriously contemplative and very original.
FINAL SAY: There's before bones and all, and then there's after.
3 Chilli Peppers