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16Oct/110

Why you should try a BMI Calculator

A BMI calculator will allow you to quickly determine your Body Mass Index.  Your Body Mass Index (BMI) is a number derived from your weight and height, and is intended to be a rough estimate of the level of body fat you are carrying.  Although it's not a direct measure, the BMI reading can be a surprisingly accurate measure of overall body fat percentage for both men and women . Your BMI is not a true measure of the amount of body fat, nevertheless your Body mass index ratio has a strong correlation to it...this correlation has been proven in various studies.  It's quick and easy to do, and will provide you with a high-level indicator that lets you know if you may need to undertake some changes in your diet or lifestyle.  After reading this article, you might want to use a tool to compute your BMI and see how you fare.

Are BMI readings used by Doctors?

Yes, BMI calculations are used quite extensively in the medical field. A BMI reading is typically used as a sort of screening procedure to predict possible weight-related health challenges for patients. While a BMI reading is not a definitive diagnostic tool when used on it's own, it is an effective initial tool to identify whether more testing is needed.  Suppose a patient has an unhealthy BMI measurement. In order to find out if their high BMI reading is really a health risk, their doctor must complete a more accurate assessment . These additional evaluations might include estimating their body fat level with a  pinch-test of their skin, or interviewing the patient about the  eating habits, how often they exercise, inquiring about any family history of obesity, etc.

What's the reason BMI readings are utilized so broadly?

Calculating BMI is an accurate method to achieve an overall demographic evaluation of obesity related health issues. Because the calculation only involves your weight and height numbers, it is cost-effective and simple for clinicians. Using a simple BMI computation isn't just helpful for doctors, however...anyone can use the tool to find out their own number and compare it to a range of typical scores.

 Are there other approaches to determine weight-related risks?

Other methods to assess the approximate levels of body fat include measuring folded skin (with calipers), water-displacement testing, electrical resistance, and even more complicated tests that leverage x-rays to estimate the density of tissue in the body. These other tests, while more accurate, are not always readily accessible, can be expensive, and are traditionally performed by specialized technicians. For these reasons, the BMI number endures as the most popular way of identifying excess body fat.

How reliable is BMI as an estimate of body fatness ?

A BMI reading is, in most cases, surprisingly close to the actual amount of body. Of course, the degree of accuracy can vary by your age, ethnic background, and gender. Don't use this as an excuse to disregard your BMI score!  Even if you disagree with the score, it's not time consuming, and you can always talk with your doctor about checking the score using a different test, such as a waistline to height ratio.

There are a  few segments of the population for whom a BMI reading may not be entirely accurate

  • Eldery people tend to have BMI readings that are lower than their actual body fat
  • Weight Lifters and other atheletes with pronounced muscles will likely score a high BMI number because the calculation does not account for the weight of the dense muscle.

What does my BMI Score Mean?

The following chart shows the various categories that patients fall into based on their BMI numbers:

 

Adults Women Men
anorexic < 17.5
underweight <19.1 <20.7
healthy range 19.1-25.8 20.7-26.4
slightly overweight 25.8-27.3 26.4-27.8
overweight 27.3-32.3 27.8-31.1
obese or significantly overweight >32.3 >31.1
severely obese 35 - 40
morbidly obese 40 or more

In the event you discover your BMI number is excessive, try not to worry. Conservative adjustments in your eating habits and workout program aren't as hard as they sound, and can get your number back within guidelines in a reasonably short time frame. It can be as simple as switching to a low fat diet, and adding some simple exercise, like a daily walk, into your routine.You should keep in mind that your BMI number is just a tool to help determine the possibility of weight-related issues, and is not a definitive answer or reason for panic.  See your Doctor for additional information.  They can respond to any questions you might have about your BMI score. The CDC is also an excellent resource for more information about the BMI measurement.

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