Paper 11.262

E. H. Schlich and M. Schlich, "Defining Area Mass Index (AMI) Using 3D Body Scanning as an Improvement of BMI", in Proc. of 2nd Int. Conf. on 3D Body Scanning Technologies, Lugano, Switzerland, 2011, pp. 262-269,


Defining Area Mass Index (AMI) Using 3D Body Scanning as an Improvement of BMI


Elmar H. SCHLICH 1, Michaela SCHLICH 2

1 Justus Liebig University Giessen, Germany;
2 University Koblenz-Landau, Koblenz, Germany


The surface area of the human body determines the amount of heat exchanged with the environment, which is a major element of the energy balance equation as it relates to weight management. The traditional Body Mass Index (BMI) calculation uses the body height squared as its denominator (unit: m2). This approximation does not consider that the heat exchange between the environment and a person with a trim build is different than that of a person with a stout build, because the specific surface size of a human body depends on its shape.
Using a laser body scanning machine, 188 people were measured to obtain reliable data of their heat exchanging surface in order to calculate and define the new measurement of Area Mass Index (AMI). As expected, the results of the AMI calculations deviated significantly from the calculations of the BMI. Actually, the detected deviation was not a constant but dependent upon the BMI itself. The value of the AMI decreased as the BMI value increased. This paper presents the basics of laser body scanning and provides the results of these series of tests.
The AMI and the Specific Body Surface (SBS) are important factors in calculating the amount of heat a body exchanges with the environment. Using a standard regression analysis, the linear function of AMI = f (BMI) is calculated separately for men and women. As expected, the hyperbolic trend of Specific Body Surface (SBS) and BMI is clearly demonstrated. These findings prove that people with higher BMIs always face disadvantages in reducing body mass because of having a lower SBS. On the other hand, slim people have principal problems gaining weight because of their higher SBS. The traditional role of BMI in weight management in consultation with nutritionists could be improved by means of an AMI conversion factor, which can be derived by using highly sophisticated 3D body scanning.


3D body scan, Area Mass Index, AMI, body mass index, BMI, human energy balance


Full paper: 11.262.pdf
Proceedings: 3DBST 2011, 25-26 Oct. 2011, Lugano, Switzerland
Pages: 262-269

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