Archive for the ‘BMI’ Category

What is obesity?

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

dangers-of-obesityObesity is considered based on the weight of a person compared to the height and has become a very important parameter of determining the level of fitness in people.

An internationally accepted index used by experts to determine who is and who is not obese is called the Body Mass Index (BMI). The BMI accepted as normal, ranges between 18 and 28, and any one above the upper limit is classified as an obese person. The more obese a person is, the more likely he or she is to develop health problems.

 What-is-ObesityFurther grading considers the severity of obesity by classifying obesity into mild, morbid and malignant obesity. Mild obesity involving a body mass index (BMI 30+) causes less morbidity than morbid obesity (BMI 40+) or malignant obesity (BMI 50+). Malignant obesity is the most dangerous and these people are very prone to heart attacks. For example, someone who is 40 percent overweight is has a two-fold chance of dying a premature death than the other person whose BMI is within normal range. So it is an issue of life and death we are talking about.

So to simply put it, obesity is excessive body fat.

How do we calculate our BMI?

Everyone needs to be able to calculate his/her BMI in order to know when to seek medical advice. It can be calculated using weight in kg and height in meters or weight in pounds and height in inches.

bmi-chartThe easiest way to find out your BMI is to use a BMI table for adults. There is also a handy BMI calculator at the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute’s website. As stated before, to find your BMI, you need to know your height and your weight.

The formula is: BMI = Weight (kg)/ {Height}2 (m)

You can also take your weight in pounds, divide that number by your height in inches squared, and multiply the result by 703 to get your BMI.

That is BMI= [Weight (Ibs)/{Height}(inches)] *730

If your BMI is 25-29.9, you are in the “overweight” category and not yet obese but being at the upper limit of normal is a sign you are slowly becoming obese. There are three classes of obesity:

 

–          Class I obesity — BMI of 30-34.9

–          Class II obesity— of 35-39.9

–          Class III obesity— of 40 and higher

 

Other classifications are Mild, Morbid and Malignant. Whatever classification you use, a BMI of 30 and above is unhealthy and that increases your weight related health risk.

 

Obesity therefore predisposes you to Heart diseases, stroke, diabetes, cancer of the gallbladder; breast, uterus, cervix, and ovaries (for women) and cancer of the colon; rectum, and prostate (for men). Gallstones, osteoarthritis, gout, apnea, high blood cholesterol, high blood pressure, pregnancy related problems, irregular menstrual cycles and infertility, psychological and social effects etc. To avoid these arrays of health risks, we must learn to eat just the amount of food the body needs. Eating too much and a sedentary lifestyle is a major culprit causing obesity.

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The link between BMI & obesity… How much and how?

Saturday, June 6th, 2015

BMI_&_obesityBMI is a tool that is often used to determine whether a person’s health is at risk due to his or her weight. It is a ratio of your weight to your height.

Health experts agree that you may gain health benefits from even a small weight loss if:

 

You are obese:  You are considered obese based on your body mass index (BMI). A BMI of 30 or more is considered obese.

You are overweight: You are considered overweight based on your BMI and have weight- related health problems or a family history of such problems. A BMI of 25 to 29.9 is considered overweight.

You have a big waist: You have a waist that measures more than 40 inches if you are a man or more than 35 inches if you are a woman.

 

How much do I need to lose?

How-Much-Protein-Do-I-Need-Lose-WeightA weight loss of 5 to 7 percent of body weight may improve your health and quality of life, and it may prevent weight-related health problems, like type 2 diabetes. For a person who weighs 200 pounds, this means losing 10 to 14 pounds. However, even if you do not need to lose weight, you should still follow healthy eating and physical activity habits to help prevent weight gain and keep you healthy over the years.

You must also remember that a BMI of 18.5 to 24.9 is considered healthy.

 

The golden formula to lose weight

The_golden_formula_to_lose_weightTo lose weight you need to remember the time-tested, recommended and yet the simplest formula i.e. you need to take in fewer calories than you use. You can do this in a number of ways such as:

– By creating and following a plan for healthy eating and a plan for regular physical activity
 
– By choosing to follow a formal weight-loss program that can help you make lifelong changes in your eating and physical activity habits.

 

 

Last but not least, weight loss and fitness is not just limited to achieving and maintaining an ideal BMI. It also involves a lot of other factors as well such as expecting a clear cut reduction in the risk of diabetes, heart disease and various other disorders. It also means living a physically active and healthy lifestyle with an overall improved sense of general well being. And above all, it means living life to its fullest.

How to calculate your own BMI? Your at-home step-by-step guide

Friday, May 29th, 2015

overweightThere are many ways to determine if you’re at a healthy weight and BMI (Body Mass Index) calculation is one of the easiest, simplest and most frequently used methods for the same. Determining your BMI is not difficult at all and you can do it easily even within the comfort of your home. In its simplest meanings, BMI compares a person’s weight to their height.

 

BMI formula

overweight_kate_by_cahabent-d7bkchvBMI uses a mathematical formula based on a person’s height and weight. BMI equals weight in kilograms divided by height in meters squared (BMI = kg/m2). When using pounds and inches, the formula needs to be altered slightly. Multiply your weight in pounds by 703. You can also calculate your own BMI accordingly. .

For example, if you weigh 120 pounds and are 5 ft. 3 in. (63 in.) tall:

BMI = 120 x 703 = 84,360 = 21.3 

63 x 63 = 3,969

This is well within the healthy weight range.

 

Step by step guide to calculate your BMI

overweight-live-longer-1024Things you need:

To calculate your own BMI while sitting within the comfort of your home, all you need is:

  • A simple calculator
  • Your already known readings for your own “height” and “weight”.

If you have these things ready then:

 

1-Enter your body weight in Kilograms

2- Press the ÷ symbol

3-Enter your body height in meters

4-Again press the ÷ symbol

5- Again enter your body height in meters

6- Press the “=” symbol

 

What does BMI tell you?

A BMI of 25 to 29.9 indicates a person is overweight.

A person with a BMI of 30 or higher is considered obese.

 

bth_obese-manIn short, for most adults, the BMI is a good way to get an idea of healthy weight ranges. But it is not always the final word in deciding if a person is overweight or obese. There are other things to think about when judging how much someone should weigh. A person with a high BMI should be evaluated by a health care provider, who might use other factors such as skin fold thickness (a measure of body fat), waist size, evaluations of diet and family health problems, and other tests to find out if a person’s weight might pose a health risk. For example, you are at a higher risk if you carry most of your weight around the abdomen. If you are overweight, losing 5 to 10 per cent of your current body weight at a rate of 2 to 4 lbs (1 to 2 kg) per month is a healthy goal.

For someone who weighs 200 lbs (90 kg), 5 to 10 per cent is 10 to 20 lbs (4.5 to 9 kg).

 

It is important to remember that while BMI does not show the difference between excess fat and muscle, it is closely associated with measures of body fat. It also predicts the development of health problems related to excess weight. For these reasons, BMI is widely used by health care providers.

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BMI & weight loss Know your weight to calculate your mass…

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

Introduction

OverweightDid you know that in the USA, alone, about 66 percent of adults are either overweight or obese? How do you know if you are among them? A simple measure called body mass index (BMI) provides useful estimates of overweight, obesity, and body fat distribution. BMI is used to broadly define different weight groups in adults 20 years old or older. The same groups apply to both men and women.

 

Understanding BMI

body-fat-measurement-bmiBMI is a number based on your weight and height. BMI measures your weight in relation to your height, and it is closely associated with measures of body fat. In general, the higher the number, the more body fat a person has. BMI is used by healthcare professionals to screen for overweight and obese individuals and to assess a patient’s health risk.

BMI is a way of checking body “fatness” for most people. It’s not absolutely accurate and there are many other things to consider, but your BMI basically helps you know whether you’re at a healthy weight. However, a person’s BMI score is not the only tool used by healthcare professionals to assess health risk. They also consider waist circumference, blood pressure, and cholesterol level, and blood sugar level, family history of disease, physical activity, and cigarette smoking when assessing a patient’s health risk.

 

BMI classification

BMI_classificationAs per BMI’s classification, your weight can fall into one of the following categories:

Underweight: BMI is less than 18.5

Normal weight: BMI is 18.5 to 24.9

Overweight: BMI is 25 to 29.9

Obese: BMI is 30 or more

These readings are very important with respect to your overall health risk and body weight.

For example,

If your BMI is above 25:

If_your_BMI_is_above_25If you are overweight (BMI over 25) and physically inactive, you may develop:

• Cardiovascular (heart and blood circulation) disease

• Gall bladder disease

• High blood pressure (hypertension)

• Diabetes

• Osteoarthritis

• Certain types of cancer, such as colon and breast cancer

 

If your BMI is below 20:

underweightIf you are underweight (BMI less than 20), you may be malnourished and develop:

• Compromised immune function

• Respiratory disease

• Digestive disease

• Cancer

• Osteoporosis

• Increased risk of falls and fractures.

 

When to lose weight on the basis of BMI?

When_to_lose_weight_on_the_basis_of_BMIYou should talk to your health care provider about losing weight if:

Your BMI is 30 or above

Your BMI is between 25 and 30 and you have two or more of the health problems listed above or / and a family history of heart disease or diabetes,

 

Conclusion

Talk to your doctor and have him or her evaluate your BMI, waist circumference, and other risk factors. Ask your doctor if you are at an increased risk for disease and if you should lose weight. Remember, even a small weight loss can help to lower your risk of developing certain diseases. 

Measuring your body weight & fat… Choices other than the BMI!

Wednesday, May 27th, 2015

Why do we need alternatives?

Measuring your body weight & fat…The Body Mass Index (BMI), a measure of weight in relation to height, is commonly used for classifying overweight and obesity. The risks of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes tend to increase on a continuum with increasing BMI, but for practical purposes a person with a BMI of over 25 is considered overweight, while someone with a BMI of over 30 is obese. But one size does not fit all. In women, a BMI as low as 21 may be associated with the greatest protection from coronary heart disease death. The BMI for observed risk in different Asian populations varies from 22 to 25 kg/m2. Therefore, dieticians, nutritionists and weight loss experts believe that other methods should also be used to evaluate a person’s overall health risk and the associated grade of obesity.

 

Alternatives to Body Mass Index

There are two main and common alternatives to Body Mass Index:

 

1-    Waist-Hip Ratio (Pears” vs. “Apples”)

Waist-Hip Ratio (Pears” vs. “Apples”)Health care providers are concerned not only with how much fat a person has, but also where the fat is located on the body. Women typically collect fat in their hips and buttocks, giving them a “pear” shape. Men usually build up fat around their bellies, giving them more of an “apple” shape. Of course some men are pear-shaped and some women become apple-shaped, especially after menopause. If you carry fat mainly around your waist, you are more likely to develop obesity-related health problems. Women with a waist measurement of more than 35 inches or men with a waist measurement of more than 40 inches have a higher health risk because of their fat distribution.

 

2-    Waist circumference

   Waist circumferenceCircumference is the perimeter of, or the distance around a circle. So waist circumference is a measure of the distance around the abdomen. Waist circumference is one of the most practical tools to assess abdominal fat for chronic disease risk and during weight loss treatment. A high waist circumference or a greater level of abdominal fat is associated with an increased risk for type 2 diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and heart disease.

 

According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services the following individuals are at increased risk for developing chronic diseases:

• Women with a waist circumference of more than 35 inches.

• Men with a waist circumference of more than 40 inches.

However, however, lower thresholds for waist circumference have been recommended for Asian populations by the World Health Organization due to recent research findings. Therefore, those at increased risk for developing chronic disease include:

• Asian women with a waist circumference of more than 31 inches.

• Asian men with a waist circumference of more than 35 inches.

To measure waist circumference locate the top of the hip bone. Place the tape measure evenly around the bare abdomen at the level of this bone. Read the tape measure and record the waist circumference in inches. Ensure that the tape is sung but does not push tightly into the skin and you measure waist circumference after breathing out normally.

 

Is waist circumference better indicator than BMI?

Is waist circumference better indicator than BMI?Waist circumference may be a better indicator of health risk than BMI alone, especially when used in combination with BMI. Waist circumference is particularly useful for individuals with a BMI of 25-34.9. For individuals with a BMI > than 35, waist circumference adds little predictive power on the disease risk classification of BMI.

Studies have shown that the distribution of body fat is associated with an increased prevalence of diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol and cardiovascular disease. Generally, the association between health risks and body fat distribution is as follows:

• Least risk – slim (no pot belly)

• Moderate risk – overweight with no pot belly

• Moderate to high risk – slim with pot belly

• High risk – overweight with pot belly.

 

Waist circumference and health risks

Waist circumference and health risksWaist circumference can be used to indicate health risk.

For men:

• 94cm or more – increased risk

• 102cm or more – substantially increased risk.

For women:

• 80cm or more – increased risk

• 88cm or more – substantially increased risk.

 

Conclusion

ConclusionIt is crystal clear from the above discussion that no single measure including BMI is 100 accurate in determining the exact health risk due to your body weight. You should, therefore, reply on , multiple methods such as BMI, wait to hip ratio and waist circumference to evaluate such risks and their link with your body weight and body fat.