Journal article

Prevalence of Obesity and the Relationship between the Body Mass Index and Body Fat: Cross-Sectional, Population-Based Data

Julie A Pasco, Geoffrey C Nicholson, Sharon L Brennan, Mark A Kotowicz



BACKGROUND: Anthropometric measures such as the body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference are widely used as convenient indices of adiposity, yet there are limitations in their estimates of body fat. We aimed to determine the prevalence of obesity using criteria based on the BMI and waist circumference, and to examine the relationship between the BMI and body fat. METHODOLOGY/PRINCIPAL FINDINGS: This population-based, cross-sectional study was conducted as part of the Geelong Osteoporosis Study. A random sample of 1,467 men and 1,076 women aged 20-96 years was assessed 2001-2008. Overweight and obesity were identified according to BMI (overweight 25.0-29.9 kg/m²; obesity ≥30.0 kg/m²) and..

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Funding Acknowledgements

The study was supported by grants awarded by the Victorian Health Promotion Foundation (, the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC, Australia) ( and Perpetual Trustees ( The funders had no role in study design, data collection and analysis, decision to publish, or preparation of the manuscript.