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Old 02-08-2012, 07:26 PM   #1
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Default Skeleton weight

Hey everyone, today I was wondering how much a normal human skeleton weighs, my scale says it's 8'5 kgs. I looked for info on the internet and in many places it said that the weight of the bones may vary largely from one person to another (due to size and density of the bone), but for everyone, it should be 10% of their weight.
Then again, it doesn't seem right to me because then my ideal weight would be 85 kgs (and I'm 1'62 cm, not tiny but short).

Anybody know anything about this? I just can't seem to find a legitimate source on Google.
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Old 02-15-2012, 07:25 PM   #2
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Archaeologist here (though not all that well versed in human osteology) -- All I can tell you for sure is that it varies A LOT and not necessarily just by a person's height or outward appearance. People of the same height or general shape (for lack of a better word) can definitely be "big boned" or very lightly built. As you would expect, this varies by gender and age, but maybe even more significantly by race and and physical or environmental variables (like nutrition, disease, and muscle mass). It is interesting to note that both genetics as well as environmental factors play a role in bone morphology, mass, and density for individuals. I have seen an incredible range in size and shape of human skeletal remains -- it has contributed a lot to my appreciation of human variability over space and time.

To answer your original question:
I would say a safe, yet conservative guess would be that your skeleton accounts for about 10-15% of total body weight. Again, I'm not an osteologist or expert of any kind -- just someone who digs in the dirt for money.
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