Obesity: What is BMI in adults, children, and teens

Body mass index, or BMI, is a meter of body size. It combines a person ’ s burden with their stature. The results of a BMI measurement can give an idea about whether a person has the adjust weight unit for their stature. BMI is a screening tool that can indicate whether a person is scraggy or if they have a healthy weight, excess system of weights, or fleshiness. If a person ’ sulfur BMI is outside of the healthy rate, their health risks may increase significantly. Carrying besides much weight unit can lead to a diverseness of health conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular problems.

A weigh that is besides low can increase the risk of malnutrition, osteoporosis, and anemia. The doctor will make suitable recommendations. BMI does not measure torso fat directly, and it does not account for historic period, sex, ethnicity, or muscleman mass in adults. however, it uses standard system of weights condition categories that can help doctors to track weight status across populations and identify likely issues in individuals.

BMI in adults

BMI calculator shows healthy weight share on PinterestA BMI chart or calculator can show a person if they have a healthy weight. Calculating BMI involves measuring a person ’ south stature and soundbox weight. Metric

  • To calculate BMI in metric units, use the following method: BMI = kg/m2
  • So, to calculate an adult’s BMI: Divide their weight in kilograms (kg) by the square of their height in meters (m2)

Since most people measure height in centimeters ( curium ), separate stature in curium by 100 to get height in meters. Imperial

  • When using imperial units, the formula is: BMI = lbs x 703/in2
  • In other words: Multiply a person’s weight in pounds (lbs) by 703. Then divide by their height in inches, squared (in2)

To avoid using the mathematics, a person can use a calculator or a chart to find their BMI .

BMI calculator

Enter height or weight in either imperial or metric function measurements to find your BMI .

BMI charts

People can besides work out their BMI using a chart. Click here to see a chart provided by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute ( NHLBI ). Locate your stature in inches on the english of the graph, then look across to find your torso weight in pounds. read to the top to see if the resultant role corresponds to a normal weight, fleshy, or fleshiness .

Understanding the results

The following mesa shows standard weight condition categories associated with BMI ranges for adults .BMI Weight status Below 18.5Underweight18.5–24.9Healthy25.0–29.9Overweight30.0 and aboveObeseBMI of less than 18.5 A BMI of less than 18.5 indicates that you are scraggy, so you may need to put on some weight. You are recommended to ask your sophisticate or a dietician for advice .BMI of 18.5–24.9 A BMI of 18.5-24.9 indicates that you are at a healthy weight for your altitude. By maintaining a healthy weight, you lower your risk of developing good health problems .BMI of 25–29.9 A BMI of 25-29.9 indicates that you are slightly corpulence. You may be advised to lose some system of weights for health reasons. You are recommended to talk to your sophisticate or a dietician for advice .BMI of over 30 A BMI of over 30 indicates that you are heavily corpulence. Your health may be at risk if you do not lose slant. You are recommended to talk to your doctor or a dietician for advice.

BMI in children and teens

In adults, BMI values are not linked to old age and are the same for both sexes. however, measuring BMI in children and teens is slenderly different. Girls and boys develop at different rates and have different amounts of body fat at different ages. For this reason, BMI measurements during childhood and adolescence take long time and sex into circumstance. Doctors and early health professionals do not categorize children by goodly weight ranges because :

  • they change with each month of age
  • male and female body types change at different rates
  • they change as the child grows taller

Doctors calculate BMI for children and teens in the same way as they do for adults, by measuring stature and weight. then they locate the BMI number and person ’ second historic period on a sex-specific BMI-for-age chart. This will indicate whether the child is within a healthy stove .

Calculator and charts for child and teen BMI

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ( CDC ) have produced a calculator that provides BMI and the comparable BMI-for-age percentile on a CDC growth chart for children and teens. first, snap here for the calculator. adjacent, use the charts to see if a child ’ south burden is desirable for their age. Click hera for the charts :

  • Girls aged 2 to 20 years
  • Boys aged 2 to 20 years

What do the results mean?

The take after categories explain the entail of the results :Weight status categoryPercentile rangeUnderweightBelow the 5th percentileHealthy weight5th percentile to less than the 85th percentileOverweight85th to less than the 95th percentileObesityEqual to or greater than the 95th percentile

How doctors use BMI

BMI is not accurate adequate to use as a diagnostic tool, but it can screen for electric potential weight problems in adults and children. If person has a eminent or low BMI, a doctor or other healthcare professional might then consider other factors, such as :

  • skinfold thickness measurements, which indicate how much fat is in the body in adults and children
  • evaluations of diet and physical activity
  • discuss any family history of cardiovascular disease and other health problems
  • recommend other appropriate health screenings

The doctor of the church or healthcare professional can then make diet and use recommendations based on these results.

Other measures of a healthy body

BMI is a utilitarian creature, but it can not identify whether a person ’ randomness weight is made up of muscle or adipose tissue. For example, an athlete with a lot of muscleman tissue may have a higher BMI than a person who is not very active. But, this does not mean that the athlete is fleshy or insalubrious. In addition, cardiovascular disease and high blood blackmail are more likely to occur in people who have extra fat — known as intuitive fat — around their middle preferably than their hips. other measures of body size include waist-hip ratio, waist-to-height ratio, and body musical composition, which measures body fatten and lean body mass. These measurement systems focus more on the amount of fat a person has and its distribution around the body. together with BMI, these extra measures can help to assess more accurately the health risks associated with an person ’ second weight.


BMI can be a utilitarian riddle joyride for predicting certain health risks. however, people should use it with caution, as it does not take early factors — such as activeness levels and body composition — into account. For children and teens, it is important to include their senesce and sex when taking a BMI measurement, because their bodies endlessly change as they develop .