Body Mass Index
When you are trying to get in better shape, or are measuring your body specs, your weight isn’t what you should be focusing on. Your body mass index can give you a much more accurate picture. The BMI measures weight relative to the height and mass of a person.
BMI was developed between 1830 and 1850, and the calculation is taken by weighing your mass and dividing it by your height in meters squared. BMI can then be used in a variety of contexts, most often to determine what is normal or desirable for your weight class. Many have debated what is termed as overweight and obese on the index because it does not decipher whether weight is due to fat or lean muscle mass.
As has previously been stated, the BMI calculation comes down to taking one’s weight and dividing it by their height. The BMI ranges from underweight to obesity, and is often employed for children and adults to determine their health. The BMI trait is influenced by genetic and non-genetic factors and it helps to determine a risk for certain health problems like diabetes.
It can be calculated using the imperial system, or the metric system. When using the metric system, you would use kilograms for weight and meters for height. When using the imperial system, weight would be calculated in pounds, and height in inches. In both calculation, the height is squared and the weight is divided by the height.
There are several categories to BMI that assess how much a person’s weight departs from what is normal for their height. Generally, anyone with a BMI below 18.5 is considered to be suffering from malnutrition, or an eating disorder, while those over the BMI value of 25 are considered to be overweight.
The categories are as follows:
BMI below 15: Very severely underweight
BMI 15 – 16: Severely underweight
BMI 16 – 18.5: Underweight
BMI 18.5 – 25: Normal
BMI 25 – 30: Overweight
BMI 30 – 35: Moderately Obese
BMI 35 – 40: Severely Obese
BMI over 40 – Very severely Obese
If you are interested in finding out what your BMI is and what category you fall under, contact a health professional.