What kind of Relationship is Between Body Mass Index and Body Fat Percentage?

J Med Syst. 2017 Jan;41(1):5. doi: 10.1007/s10916-016-0636-9. Epub 2016 Nov 8.


Although body mass index (BMI) and body fat percentage (B F %) are well known as indicators of nutritional status, there are insuficient data whether the relationship between them is linear or not. There are appropriate linear and quadratic formulas that are available to predict B F % from age, gender and BMI. On the other hand, our previous research has shown that artificial neural network (ANN) is a more accurate method for that. The aim of this study is to analyze relationship between BMI and B F % by using ANN and big dataset (3058 persons). Our results show that this relationship is rather quadratic than linear for both gender and all age groups. Comparing genders, quadratic relathionship is more pronounced in women, while linear relationship is more pronounced in men. Additionaly, our results show that quadratic relationship is more pronounced in old than in young and middle-age men and it is slightly more pronounced in young and middle-age than in old women.

Keywords: Artificial neural networks; Big data; Body fat percentage; Body mass index; Obesity.

MeSH terms

  • Adipose Tissue*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Artificial Intelligence*
  • Body Mass Index*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Models, Statistical*
  • Obesity
  • Sex Factors
  • Young Adult