What is a Healthy Body Weight?December 06, 2016
Are you trying to lose weight but not sure what is considered a healthy body weight?
Some tools that can be used to determine if you are a healthy body weight is determining your Body Mass Index (BMI) and your waist circumference.
1. Body Mass Index
Body Mass Index (BMI) is used to indicate if you are a healthy weight based on your weight and height. The BMI places you in a category of underweight, normal weight, overweight or obese. When your BMI is in the normal range, you are a healthy body weight.
- BMI <18.5 is underweight.
- BMI 18.5–24.9 is normal weight.
- BMI 25.0–29.9 is overweight.
- BMI 30.0 – 34.9 is obese class 1 (moderately obese).
- BMI 35.0 – 39.9 is obese class 2 (severely obese).
- BMI 40.0 and higher is obese class 3 (very severely obese).
To determine your BMI, click here to use an online calculator.
Note: The BMI scale does not take into account variation in body weight to muscle mass proportion so if you are an athlete with larger muscles. Since muscle weighs more than fat, your BMI will be higher than someone else who is the same height and body size but has less muscle mass than you.
2. Waist Circumference
- Your waist size is a good indicator of your risk for:
- Type 2 Diabetes
- High Blood Pressure
- High Cholesterol
- Heart Disease
- Use a tape measure that measures in inches.
- Wrap the tape measure above your hip bone and level with your belly button.
- Make sure the tape measure is laying flat against your skin and is not too tight or too loose.
- Take your measurement after you breathe out. Try not to contract your core.
If your waist measures less than 40 inches for men and 35 inches for non-pregnant women, you have a lower risk. However, if your waist measures more than that, you have a higher risk.
If you find you are in the overweight or obese category or at a high risk for the health issues mentioned above, you may want to talk to your doctor about your options in how to lower your risk.