Body Mass Index

Body Mass Index or (BMI) is a number that is calculated from a person’s weight and height.  Since BMI is dependent upon net weight and height it makes simplistic assumptions about the distribution of muscle, bone, cartilage, water weight, fat and more.  BMI does not measure body fat directly, but research has shown that it correlates between groups related by general mass and can serve as a fair means of predicting health risks.

Metabolic Medical Center uses BMI as one of many screening tools to help identify possible weight problems for adults.  We do not use it as a diagnostic tool alone.  Great consideration is given to each patient on the bases of family history, body frame, activity levels, diet evaluations among other appropriate health screenings performed by our physicians.  To put it simply, BMI is not a one size fits all measurement tool and we do not treat it as such.

A frequent use of BMI is to assess how much an individual’s body weight departs from what is considered normal or desirable for a person of his his or her age and height.  It allow for easy comparison with the general public and it is an inexpensive diagnostic tool for our physicians.

Human bodies rank along the index from around 15 (near starvation) to over 40 (morbidly obese)  This stats spread is usually described in broad categories: underweight, normal weight, overweight, obese and morbidly obese.  The particular BMI values used to demarcate these categories varies based on the authority and other factors brought into consideration

BMI is a useful tool to a patient’s overall healthy weight but it is certainly not the only tool.  We also measure *percent body fat using a bioimpedance device. (an instrument used for estimating body fat by determining the electrical impedance, or resistance to the flow of an electrical current through body tissue)

BMI Formula

BMI = 703 x weight (lbs)

                       height ²  (in²)

Fat Percentages

Female:   20-29%  normal

                          30-32.9% overweight

         >33% obese

Male:       <21% normal

                              21-25% overweight

               >25% obese

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