One of the popular ways to determine whether you are at your healthy weight range, is the Body Mass Index (BMI) calculation, it is also one of the simplest and most frequently used methods. Although there are many specific BMI calculators, designed to measure the values of the body mass index, it is simple enough for everyone to make the calculations at home, using just a simple pocket calculator. You just need to be familiar with the definition, the actual formula and some specifications regarding the different units of measurement. By a simple definition BMI compares the body weight to a prison’s height.
The BMI Formula
The mathematical formula that is used to calculate your BMI, is based on the relation of your weight according to your height. It equals to: weight in kilograms divided by the squared value of height in meters (BMI = kg/m2). If you are using the values of your weight in pounds and height in inches, you can also calculate your own BMI accordingly, but the formula needs to be slightly altered.
Alternatively, you can calculate your own BMI by dividing your weight in pounds by the square of your height in inches, then multiply by the coefficient of 703.
Example: if you weigh 140 pounds and are 5 ft. 8 inches (68 inches) tall:
BMI = (140 / 68 x 68) x 703 = (140 / 4,624) x 703 = 0.0303 x 703 = 21,3 (rounded value)
This value indicates that you are well within the healthy weight range.
What Does BMI Mean to You?
BMI is less than 18.5 (Indicates a person is underweight)
From 18.5 to 24.9 (Indicates you are in the normal weight range)
From 25 to 29.9 (A person is being overweight)
BMI is 30 or more (Indicates Obesity)
The BMI index gives a good indication whether you are at the healthy-weight range or not. However it is not absolutely accurate, in some cases this index alone is not enough for a final diagnosis to be made – whether a person is overweight or obese. Someone with a high BMI should be examined by a health care specialist, who might evaluate other factors, such as skin fold thickness (a type of measuring the excess body fat), waist size, consideration of eating habits and family history health problems. These and other factors should be examined, in order to estimate whether a person’s weight possesses a health risk. If the tests show you are being overweight, you should take immediate precautions, in order to eliminate or significantly decrease the possibility for future healthcare problems. Generally, the loss of 1 – 2 pounds per week, through exercise and clean eating, is considered to be healthy and naturally, and it is widely recommended as safe weight loss. If you intend to improve your health condition, it is a good advice to try to stick at such a rate of weight loss (no fad diets, hunger or excessive workout regimens).
It is important to know that BMI is related to the measurement of the percentage of the body fat, but it does not indicates a clear idea of the correlation between excess fat and body muscles. The body mass index also helps to predict the possibility of future development of health problems, due to excess weight. Respectively, BMI is widely used by physicians, to determine and prevent their patient’s weight issues.