BMI stands for Body Mass Index. It is a calculation that uses weight and height to determine whether a person is average or underweight, overweight, or obese. BMI doesn’t distinguish between fat and lean tissue, so it must be used with other measurements such as waist circumference to know if your weight is healthy.
BMI has become the most common way to tell if someone is at an appropriate weight for their height. However, some limitations come with BMI because it cannot measure muscle mass without being complicated by other factors like body type, age, gender, etc… For example, athletes with more muscle mass may have higher BMIs, but they are not considered “overweight” because this index does not consider muscles.
BMI is not a perfect measurement, but it is helpful for understanding general weight trends. For instance, if you are looking at the BMI of your entire country, you can see the overall trend towards higher or lower weights depending on your current lifestyle. Physicians use BMI to track someone’s progress over time instead of using one particular number. If you use BMI to track your progress, it is acceptable to use the number you get from one specific calculation at one point in time, but it should be compared to previous measurements over weeks or months.
When considering your height and weight for this calculation, remember that you must weigh yourself on a scale first thing in the morning after using the toilet but before you eat, drink or exercise. If your weight fluctuates throughout the day, it might not accurately measure your body fat percentage. You will then take that number and plug it into a BMI calculator to determine your BMI calculation.
Some examples of how to use BMI:
- If you are female and your height is 5’5″ (65″), your weight should be 135 pounds or less for a healthy BMI.
- If you are female and your height is 5’10” (70″), your weight should be 145 pounds or less for a healthy BMI.
- If you are male and your height is 5’5″ (65″), your weight should be 154 pounds or less for a healthy BMI.
- If you are male and your height is 6’0″ (72″), your weight should be 179 pounds or less for a healthy BMI.
As indicated above, it’s important to remember that the BMI calculation is just a rough estimate and should not be used as your only indicator of health or weight status. It helps give you an idea of where you stand compared to people in general, but using waist measurements can tell if someone is carrying too much visceral fat.
BMI charts and calculators can be found all over the internet, but remember that they only give you a rough estimate of your general weight status and cannot provide an accurate diagnosis. It is essential to work with a trained professional like a doctor or nutritionist to make sure you are truly healthy.
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