The benefits of maintaining a healthy weight go far beyond improved energy and smaller clothing sizes. By losing weight or maintaining a healthy weight, you are also likely to enjoy these quality-of-life factors too.
- Fewer joint and muscle pains
- More energy and greater ability to join in desired activities
- Better regulation of bodily fluids and blood pressure
- Reduced burden on your heart and circulatory system
- Better sleep patterns
- Reductions in blood triglycerides, blood glucose, and risk of developing type 2 diabetes
- Reduced risk for heart disease and certain cancers
BMI is an indicator of the amount of body fat for most people. It is used as a screening tool to identify whether an adult is at a healthy weight. Find your BMI and what it means with our handy BMI Calculator. A separate BMI Percentile Calculator should be used for children and teens that takes a child’s age and gender into consideration.
- BMI stands for Body Mass Index
This is a numerical value of your weight in relation to your height. A BMI between 18.5 and 25 kg/m² indicates a normal weight. A BMI of less than 18.5 kg/m² is considered underweight. A BMI between 25 kg/m² and 29.9 kg/m² is considered overweight. A BMI of 30 kg/m² or higher is considered obese.
- Excess weight increases the heart's work.
It also raises blood pressure and blood cholesterol and triglyceride levels and lowers HDL (good) cholesterol levels. It can make diabetes more likely to develop, too. Lifestyle changes that help you maintain a 3-5% weight loss are likely to result in clinically meaningful improvements in blood glucose, triglycerides, and risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Greater weight loss can even help reduce BP and improve blood cholesterol.
- To calculate your BMI:
- Type your height and weight into the calculator.
- Select a status option if you're under 20 years old, highly trained/athletic, pregnant or breastfeeding. If one of these situations applies to you, the BMI may not be the best method of assessing your risk from overweight or obesity.
Last reviewed 08/2014.
- Frequently asked questions about BMI?
- How does my BMI correlate to my risk of heart disease? (opens in new window)
- Assess your overall risk of heart attack or heart disease
- BMI in children