Determining Your Body Mass Index

A good indicator of how much fat you carry is the Body Mass Index (BMI). Although it is not a perfect measure, it gives a fairly accurate assessment of how much of your body is composed of fat.

Determining how much you should weigh is not a simple matter of looking at an insurance height-weight chart, but includes considering the amount of bone, muscle and fat in your body's composition. The amount of fat is the critical measurement.

A good indicator of how much fat you carry is the Body Mass Index (BMI). Although it is not a perfect measure, it gives a fairly accurate assessment of how much of your body is composed of fat.

To calculate your BMI using the American formula:

BMI = (Weight in Pounds x 703) / (Height in Inches x Height in Inches)

For example, a person who weighs 165 pounds and is 5 feet 4 inches tall has a BMI of 28.

(165 lbs x 703) / (64 inches x 64 inches) = 28

To calculate your BMI using the Metric formula:

BMI = Weight in Kilograms / (Height in Meters x Height in Meters)

For example, a person who weighs 99.79 Kilograms and is 1.905 Meters tall has a BMI of 27.5.

99.79 Kg / (1.905 Meters x 1.905 Meters)= 27.5

A BMI between 25 and 29 is considered overweight. Anything over 30 is considered obese.

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