Are You Overweight?
That’s an easy question to answer, but the answer is often difficult to accept. The answer lies in your Body Mass Index (B.M.I.). BMI is a ratio of your weight to your height. It is calculated by multiplying your weight (in pounds) by 703, then dividing by your height (in inches) squared.
- If your BMI is between 18.5 and 24.9, your weight is considered healthy.
- If it falls between 25.0 and 29.9 you are overweight but not obese. Not yet.
- Greater than 30 places you in the obese range. You may want to sit down first.
Accepting the Truth
Most of you reading this post are either overweight or obese. You must accept this fact in order to move on. Remember, you do not have to look or feel overweight to be overweight. If your BMI is greater than 25, you are at an unhealthy weight and at an increased risk of obtaining several deadly medical conditions.
Waist circumference is another useful method to determine if you are at a healthy weight. Large amounts of fat around your midsection increase the risks associated with being overweight. To determine your waist circumference, measure around your bare abdomen right above the two highest points of your hip. A man’s measurement should be less than 40 inches and a woman’s less than 35 inches. If your waist circumference is not what it should be, your first goal will be to get it there.
Body Fat Percentage
The Body Mass Index and waist measurement are reliable ways to determine healthy weight. However, some of you still doubt your overweight or obese status. You skeptics should then get your body fat percentage checked. Body Fat Percentage (B.F.P.) is the percent of your body that is composed of fat.
- A healthy BFP for women is 15% to 25%, and for men is 10% to 20%.
- Overweight is described as a BFP of 25.1% to 30% for women and 20.1& to 25% for men; and
- Obesity is considered greater than 30% and greater than 25% respectively.
Body fat percentages can be checked at home using special bathroom scales. More accurate, expensive or difficult to obtain tests are also available: Dexa Scanning (uses x-rays), Underwater Testing (uses water) or Bod Pods (uses air).
Use these various methods to figure out whether or not you are at a healthy weight. If you are not, make a commitment to start losing weight today.