Pro-food-industry group using NBA Finals to blast BMI

WASHINGTON: A pro-food-industry group used the NBA Finals to point out what it sees as the absurdity of a US government calculation for figuring out which Americans are overweight and obese.

WASHINGTON: A pro-food-industry group used the NBA Finals to point out what it sees as the absurdity of a US government calculation for figuring out which Americans are overweight and obese.

The Center for Consumer Freedom in a press release last week said that under the Body Mass Index (BMI), 17 of the 24 players on the Los Angeles Lakers and Detroit Pistons fall into the overweight category.

They include finely tuned athletes like Lakers Kobe Bryant, Karl Malone, and Shaquille O'Neal.

The group said the index - which pegs 39 million Americans as overweight - helps fuel what it calls the "over-hyped 'obesity epidemic.'"

"The problem with the BMI is that it casts people without a weight problem into the category of obesity, diluting the number of people who actually are overweight," said Mike Burita, the center's director of communications.

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