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Table 2 Test Characteristics. Non-pregnant participants ages 16 and up in NHANES 1999–2013, complete data on BMI and weight perception. N = 37,281

From: Self-estimated BMI, but not self-perceived body size, accurately identifies unhealthy weight in US adults

  Objectively-measured BMI category
Underweight Normal weight Overweight Obese
Self-perceived body size Sensitivity 55.7 73.2 59.6 90.8
Specificity 21.7 59.9 89.6
BMI category based on self-reported height and weight Sensitivity 67.1 92.1 81.4 83.5
Specificity 76.2 85.2 78.1 94.8
  1. Sensitivity and specificity refer to the ability of individual self-perception or self-estimation to identify objectively measured BMI category. Self-perceived body size was categorized into ‘underweight’, ‘about the right weight’ or ‘overweight’, with no separate category for obesity