BMI Calculator For Men and Women

Understanding the BMI – Body Mass Index

BMI Rating
Rating Status
- 18.5
Under Weight
18.5 - 24.9
Normal
25.0 - 29.9
Overweight
30.0 +
Obese

For years, people referred to so called “life insurance” weight charts to determine if they were at a healthy weight. Today, your doctor is more likely to refer you to a bmi chart to help you determine if your weight is where it should be.

What is the Body Mass Index?

BMI stands for body mass index. It is an alternative way to measure your weight to determine if you’re underweight, healthy, overweight or obese. The body mass index measures, essentially, the fatness of a person. While it does not measure body fat directly, it gives a better idea of how much fat a person has than traditional measurements.

Other ways to calculate whether or not you’re overweight include direct measurement of body fat, using skinfold calipers and underwater weighing. However, bmi is used more frequently because it is convenient, and requires no special equipment. Anyone can calculate their own bmi right at home.

How to Calculate Your BMI

Calculating your bmi requires the following formula:

Weight (lb) / [height (in)] 2 x 703

Calculate BMI by dividing weight in pounds (lbs) by height in inches (in) squared and multiplying by a conversion factor of 703.

Example: Weight = 150 lbs, Height = 5’5″ (65″)

Calculation: [150 ÷ (65)2] x 703 = 24.96

If you’d prefer, you can also use an online BMI calculator, such as the one provided by the Department of Health and Human Services.

You can interpret your bmi results with the following table. This table is valid for adults aged 20 and older.

Is the BMI an Accurate Method for Assessing if You Are Overweight?

For most people, the bmi is a very accurate assessment of whether or not a person is overweight. The one exception is in highly trained athletes. If a person has a very high percentage of muscle, this will make them weigh more.

Since the bmi calculator does not distinguish between muscle and fat, but only weight compared to height, it is possible for someone who is very muscular to seem overweight according to their bmi calculation.

However, the bmi is the standard by which most doctors determine if a person is overweight. In order to accurately depict a person’s health situations, however, it is important to look at more than just the number on the scale or the bmi calculation.

If your bmi calculation says that you’re overweight or obese, it is a good idea to have additional tests run to determine the status of your health.

Many people who fall into the overweight or obese category will have health problems as a result, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol or Type 2 diabetes. In addition to monitoring your weight, these health conditions must be monitored, too.

Calculating your bmi is a simple way to get an idea of whether or not you’re overweight and where your ideal weight falls. It should, however, be used in conjunction with other tools designed to ensure your good health.

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