BMIWhat is BMI?How do you use BMI?By Kathryn Kotula, R.D., M.S., M.P.H.
Introduction• BMI – have you heard of it?• What is it and how do you use it?What is BMI?• BMI is an acronym for BODY MASS INDEX
What is BMI used for?• Height/Weight charts – BMI is now used in place of the old Height/Weight charts• BMI – health professionals use the BMI to determine is a person is a healthy weight for their height• BMI is calculated based on a person’s height and weight• BMI is a number used to determine one’s level of body fatness
How is BMI used as a Measure ofHealth?• BMI is used to screen for weight problems that may lead to future health problems• For most people BMI is a reliable indicator of body fatness• The higher the BMI number, the more body fat a person has.
Is BMI always a reliable indicator ofBody Fatness?• Although BMI is a reliable indicator of body fatness for most people there is an exception:• Athletes: those who are very physically fit, may have a high BMI due to a lot of muscle mass but not due to a high level of body fatness.
How do you calculate BMI foradults• BMI can be calculated using the formula: Formula: weight (kg) / [height (m)]2• BMI calculator: an easier method is to use a BMI calculator.• The adult BMI calculator is used to determine the BMI for people 20 years of age and over.• Numerous BMI calculators are available.• One popular BMI is at the CDC.gov website. You can choose the Adult BMI calculator or the Child and Teen BMI calculator• http://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/assessing/bmi/• OR you can down load an App from iTunes that you can use to calculate BMI using a Smartphone.• A popular BMI calculator App can be downloaded from:• http://apps.usa.gov/bmi-app.shtml
BMI Apps for Your Smartphone• OR you can down load an App from iTunes that you can use to calculate BMI using a Smartphone.• A popular BMI calculator App can be downloaded from:• http://apps.usa.gov/bmi-app.shtml• Or download the BMI calculator free App from Itunes at BMI calculator from Itunes• You want a BMI calculator that calculates BMI for adults and for children/teens as the calculation is different.
How do you interpret BMI levelsfor adults?• Once you determine a BMI level for an adult, use the chart below to determine the person’s weight category: BMI Weight Status Below 18.5 Underweight 18.5 – 24.9 Normal 25.0 – 29.9 Overweight 30.0 and Above Obese
How do you interpret BMI levelsfor children?• For those over 2 years of age and under 20 years of age, calculating and interpreting BMI levels is different than for an adult.• The BMI is calculated from the child’s weight and height, age and sex.• BMI percentile: a percentile ranking is also determined. It is this percentile that is used to evaluate a child’s weight status.• Like adults, BMI is used to determine if a childe is underweight, a healthy weight, overweight or obese.
BMI Table for Children• Once a BMI percentile is calculated for a child, then the table below is used:Weight Status Category Percentile RangeUnderweight Less than the 5th percentile 5th percentile to less than the 85thHealthy weight percentileOverweight 85th to less than the 95th percentile Equal to or greater than the 95thObese percentile
Learning More About BMI• For more information on BMI, go to www.CDC.gov and type in “BMI”• OR use the QR below to take you to the CDC website
Summary of BMI• Body Mass Index (BMI) is the latest tool to assess the amount of body fatness in a person.• It is a calculation using a person’s height and weight.• Health professionals use BMI to determine if one is underweight, a healthy weight, overweight or obese.• BMI can provide an indication of weight categories that could lead to future health problems.• BMI levels are interpreted differently for adults and children so different BMI calculators are used.
Summary of BMI• BMI is a relatively new tool to determine if one is underweight, a healthy weight, overweight or obese.• BMI for adults is based on height and weight.• BMI for children is based on height, weight, age and sex.• The easiest way to calculate BMI is to use a BMI calculator at CDC.gov or an App.