How To Calculate Your BMI

April 2, 2014 by  
Filed under Weight Loss Tips

Calculating BMI

So what does BMI actually mean?

BMI, or the body mass index, is a tool that’s used to determine whether or not a person is at a normal weight for his or her height.  It was invented between 1830 and 1850 by mathematician and scientist Adolphe Quetelet.  Though it’s been almost 200 years since he created the BMI, it’s used today almost exactly as he outlined.

While BMI isn’t the final word in whether or not someone is at a normal weight, it’s one of the first tools often used to determine if someone’s overweight.  Because the BMI doesn’t distinguish between weight from fat and weight from muscle (other tools must be used to determine the actual amount of fat) it doesn’t work well for very muscular people like athletes.

It also does not take in the affect of different size body frames.

But for most of us, BMI is a pretty accurate measure of whether we’re underweight, a normal weight, overweight or obese.

There will be 2 methods shown here; one for meters and kg’s and one for inches and pounds.

Metrics first

Calculating BMI isn’t difficult once you understand the formula.  The basic formula is weight divided by height squared, or kg/m2. Sounds confusing doesn’t it?

You simply take your height in meters and square it which means you take the number of meters times itself.  Then divide that number into your weight in kilograms.  So a person who’s five-and-a-half-feet tall stands about 1.7 meters.  To get 1.7 meters squared, you simply multiply 1.7 times 1.7, which equals 2.89.  Now, convert weight to kilograms.

So if someone weigh 200 pounds, that’s about 91 kilograms.  To determine the BMI of someone about five-and-a-half-feet tall who weights 200 pounds, or who stands 1.7 meters tall who weights 91 kilograms, we divide the weight by the height squared, or 91 divided by 2.89.  That gives us the result of about 31.  This individual is classified as obese.  How do I know that?

A BMI of 18.5 or below indicates an underweight person. The normal weight range is from 18.5 to 24.9. Overweight people will have a BMI of 25 to 29.9.  A BMI of 30 or greater indicates obesity. So a person with a BMI of 31 is in the obese range, but not by much.

Calculate with Inches and Pounds

Take your height in inches and square it. That is take your height in inches and times this number by  your height in inches.
For example: if you are 5 feet 7 inches you would take 67 inches (that 60 inches for the 5 feet and add the 7 inches) and times that by 67 inches (67 x67 = 4489)

Now take your weight in pounds and divide that by your squared height. Example: 185 pounds    Take 185 pounds and divide by 4489 which equals .041 and multiply this by 703 = your BMI

.041  times  703 = 28%

While it may seem complicated the first time that you do it, you will only need to check every few months, so it really isn’t a big deal.
You will also find that once you calculate your BMI once, you will realize that it really is easy to do.

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