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Healthy BMI but look unhealthy?

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Hey everyone,


       I know BMI isn't everything and a lot of other factors are in place. But why is it whenever I drop below like 150 and especially 145 people say that I look emaciated, need to eat more, look unhealthy, etc. but I am still technically at a "healthy" bmi....


I have been around 138-140 now for a few weeks and people have been criticizing me so much, but my BMI is still fine...I received similar criticism last 2 years ago when I dropped to 132....I don't get it what is wrong with me weighing 140 lbs (I am a 20 y/o 5'7'' male 28 waist)....I mean in your opinion isn't that weight ok? are some BMI's not ok for people even if they are "healthy"

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Males are genetically predisposed to have a higher lean body mass/lower body fat percentage than women. You may have a low body fat percentage, but a healthy weight on the scale. This is why BMI can be inaccurate on the higher end for bodybuilders and athletes.

If you feel you do look emaciated, personally, you can gain weight. But as your body is essentially a healthy BMI, it is down to how you feel.

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thanks for the quick reply!

yea it's really my parents and other family members who are getting on my case....and they are extremely rude about it. Anytime I get a bit of an attitude with them (which I always have) they say "oh I watched a special on that...people who don't eat get mood swings"...or the best was when my dad bought me a piece of clothing that was too big for x-mas and felt like it was appropriate to start scolding me while we were opening gifts on x-mas morning about how I look sickly and need to gain weight etc....and me liking to watch the foodnetwork and baking (which I do eat-just in moderation) are always brought up....and they are constantly encouraging me to eat crap and overeat it even though they know I had a binge eating disorder problem 2 years ago!...I know I have problems still that linger from two years ago when I def. had some major ED things going on and I know I don't eat in the general way people my age do (i.e. eating anything when they want whenver)...but I mean come on enough is enough

and my mom, sister, and brother have told me over and over again I'm embarassing how I look...but I (and my friends I think at least; they don't say anything) see anything wrong with my's kind of funny b/c these are the same people who criticized me constantly when I weigh 265 lbs at one point.... I don't know what to do...I don't want to gain weight, but then again am figuring if it would shut them up...I was like in the 150's this past summer and that's when they stopped saying anything or "worrying"...but then isn't it my body?

It comes down to frame-size a lot of the time.  As someone with a relatively large frame if my BMI goes below about 23 I look quite haggard and people start asking me if I feel OK.  Someone the same height as me with a very slight, wispy frame would probably still look healthy at BMI 21 or 22.  There's a range of healthy BMIs rather than one 'ideal' BMI for that reason.

I have a similar dilemma.  I know that right now I look my best with clothes on.  I am at a healthy, normal weight and BMI.

BUT, having been heavier, I still have bits of loose flab on my belly and dimpled thigh flab that I just hate, and want to lose more to get rid of it.

I know exercise and working out will help get rid of some of that or make it less noticeable, but it's fat and I want to get rid of it.  But if I get thinner than this, my face, neck and shoulders start to look kind of gaunt.  But the flabe down below is still there, where nobody can see it.

I don't want to go down to a BMI or body fat % that is lower than "healthy", but I guess I want to be on the borderline, if it will get rid of those pesky flabby spots.

My BMI is 19 and I look perfectly healthy, with large D cup breasts and a round shaped back side.

I also look healthier with a BMI of 18, (but I recently chose to gain a little weight to protect me from the risks of being under weight)

I have heard people with a BMI of 19 say that they look emaciated, and some people can look lean and slim with a BMI of 24; when my BMI goes above 20 I look big for my frame, and my breasts become enormous… if I was to have a BMI of 24 I would look terrible large!

Your BMI is healthy but it may not be for you, but YOU are the best person to determine weather your healthy BMI feels right for your body - if you feel great and have enough energy to function well and you have no health problems that are characteristic of being under your natural weight then you should be fine at your current BMI!

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yea I mean I guess (as stupid as it sounds I never realized this before) there is a BMI RANGE and where one falls is based on personal factors....

ahhh I don't know I mean again I am happy with how I look, and actually wouldn't mind being even lighter (although I recognize 140 is a healthy weight and that losing weight would be ridiculous)...

the problem with me only "knowing" what weight is best for me is that I still have a very distorted view of my body....I mean don't get me wrong I know that I am not overweight and look thin....but I also still see that 265 lb person I was looking back at me in the mirror and think that everyone is thinner than me...and the worst thing is when people tell me I look underweight or try to scare me and say "oh you have the figure of a girl" I kind of like it...I don't know why and know that this is not normal....

I mean I had an eating disorder two years ago so trudge along everyday eating properly and exercising without overdoing it because I NEVER want to go through that hell again and love being able to eat everything in moderation and enjoy exercising.... but I don't know I don't care if I look healthy or not...just that I am thin...and not only that, but that I am thinner than other people... that is where my problem now lie

i kinda have a problem with the bmi scale too...

My BMI is 18.6 i think. But i dont have a chest or butt AT ALL.  Does that throw the bmi scale off? idk. it doesn't look like i need to gain any weight...but according to the bmi scale i should.

everyone holds their weight differently. i used to weigh 107 lbs at 5'2 (bmi 19.5), yet alot of people told me i looked like a sick skeleton. i know people who weigh 100 lbs at 5'2 and look perfectly healthy. everyone is just different.

yep im jus the same as eerica. i had a bmi of 20 and i was told by my doc that i looked unwell and it didnt suit me.... i was struggling with an ED and proceeded to allow my bmi to fall to 16 and even i felt i was morbidly ill looking.

but i have a brother who is not struggling with an ED, but he is a teen and he is growing up faster than out and his bmi is currently 14. he looks fine.... a bit skinny but not deathly.

so i think it shows that BMI doesnt suit everyone perfectly. the larger your frame the less it suits i think. i have a medium and muscular frame and so when the weight fell off me i looked absolutely wretched flat gaunt and hollow. some ppl with smaller frames just look petite!

Bmi is a relative measure... Just because a chart says it's normal that still doesn't mean it's right for your frame, etc - as other posters have said.

My boyfriend is 5'7" and weighs about 160.  He looks perfect and I think if he weighed less he would look sickly!

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