Hunger and Eating

Critical Thinking Questions

The index that is often used to classify people as being underweight, normal weight, overweight, obese, or morbidly obese is called BMI. Given that BMI is calculated solely on weight and height, how could it be misleading?


Using BMI as a sole metric can actually be misleading because people who have large amounts of lean muscle mass can actually be characterized as being overweight or obese based on their height and weight. Weight versus height is a somewhat crude measurement as it doesn’t distinguish the amount of body weight that comes from lean versus fatty tissue.

As indicated in this section, Caucasian women from industrialized, Western cultures tend to be at the highest risk for eating disorders like anorexia and bulimia nervosa. Why might this be?


These disorders are closely associated with sociocultural emphasis on a thin-ideal that is often portrayed in media. Given that non-Caucasians are under-represented in popular media in the West and that the thin-ideal is more heavily emphasized for women, this particular group is most vulnerable.