AMA’s New BMI Policy Panders To Wokism

The American Medical Association (AMA), the largest organization of doctors in the United States, recently declared the long-used Body Mass Index (BMI) tool as having elements of “racist exclusion.” The announcement comes for some as a signal of further descent into a world where everything, even medical tools, is seen through a lens of identity politics.

Body Mass Index, a simple formula devised in the 19th century by Belgian mathematician Lambert Adolphe Jacques Quetelet, divides a person’s weight by the square of their height to determine levels of obesity. It has stood as a cornerstone of population health for years. Now, the AMA questions its applicability, citing its basis primarily on data collected from non-Hispanic White populations. This has raised eyebrows among conservatives who view this move as furthering the left’s relentless campaign to label everything as racist.

While the association acknowledges the limitations of BMI and suggests that it should be used with other factors like body composition and fat percentage, their focus on its “racist” origins feels like an unnecessary detour from the main issue, improving its effectiveness.

There is no question that the BMI has its flaws in that it does not consider muscle mass, for example, and as a result, can label healthy and muscular individuals as overweight. An update to this nearly 200-year-old tool could be helpful. The contention arises when the reason for this change is not just its outdatedness but an accusation of historical racism.

The AMA’s declaration comes as part of a broader shift in the medical world, with the association advising doctors to rely less on BMI in determining a patient’s health, focusing instead on factors like body composition, belly fat, waist circumference, and genetic factors. Views on proper weight management are also shifting, moving away from focusing on willpower and dieting to more “balanced, individualized approaches.”

What’s more, it’s worth noting that the AMA’s move aligns with the growing acceptance of medications as treatments for obesity. This could be seen as moving away from personal responsibility toward pharmaceutical solutions, which might benefit Big Pharma more than patients.

It appears that the AMA’s new stance on BMI is more than just a push for a more accurate measure of obesity; it’s a symbol of the profound changes happening within the medical profession and society. While no one disputes the need to update old medical practices and tools, the controversy lies in labeling them as inherently racist or harmful.

Most conservatives would likely agree that we need to enhance and modernize our health metrics. But let’s do it for the right reasons. Let’s do it because it will result in better, more personalized healthcare, not because we are trying to pander to the latest trend in political correctness.