When it comes to your weight, especially when you’re dealing with weight loss, it can be difficult to know whether you are at a healthy weight or what you should aim for as a healthy weight to be at.
While the most common and simple tools to help you know where your weight should be at are things such as the mirror and the scale, there are several other things you can do to figure out what your healthy weight is. One of the more common ways to check the health status of your weight is to check your BMI. If you aren’t quite sure what a BMI is or indicates, here’s a quick guide:
BMI 101 –
Your BMI, or body mass index, is a number that can be calculated by using your weight and height. The number helps you figure out whether you are at a healthy weight by measuring your body fat proportions. Your BMI can be used as a general screening method to figure out if your weight and fat proportions may be putting you at risk for health complications like diabetes, heart disease, and even cancer.
There are four general classes to define the different weight groups when it comes to your BMI. Based on your BMI, you can determine whether you are underweight, normal weight, overweight, or obese by checking whether you BMI falls within one of the following groups:
Underweight: BMI less than 18.5
Normal Weight: BMI is between 18.5 and 24.9
Overweight: BMI is between 25 and 29.9
Obese: BMI is over 30
Of course, there are several different ways to figure out your BMI. You can check using a chart, using an online calculator, or just calculating your own BMI using a formula.
The two easier methods are using online calculators and checking your BMI by using a chart. There are a ton of websites that offer online BMI calculators, and you can use a chart such as the one below, which can be found on the website www.cancer.org.
If for whatever reason those two options are not available, or you just prefer finding out your BMI for yourself, you can also calculate your own BMI.
You can calculate your BMI by 1) Multiplying your height, in inches, by your height again, in inches, then 2) divide your weight, in pounds, by the number you calculated in the first step, and finally 3) multiplying that number by 703. You can also calculate your BMI by taking your weight in kilograms and dividing it by your height in meters, squared.
At the end of the day, your BMI can be a great tool to indicate whether you are at a healthy weight, or should consider losing weight soon. While there are many ways to figure out your BMI, there’s always a chance that your BMI might not tell the whole story about your health and fat proportion, so if you have any significant concerns about your body mass index don’t be scared to talk with your doctor, who might be able to give you a more accurate and individualized measurement and determination of how healthy your weight is.