BMI: Are you a healthy weight?
Body Mass Index (BMI) is a number calculated from a person’s weight and height. BMI provides a reliable indicator of body fatness for most people and is used to screen for weight categories that may lead to health problems. The healthiest BMI range for adults is 18.5 to 24.9.
Having a BMI of 25 or higher may be an indicator of having too much body fat; this is unhealthy as it increases an individual’s risk for heart disease, diabetes, and other chronic conditions. BMI does not diagnose overweight and obesity, but is a strong sign that weight may be a health problem and further assessments by a health care provider are in order. These assessments might include skin fold thickness measurements, evaluations of diet, physical activity and family history, and other appropriate health screenings.
Note — The following resources are applicable only to adult patients. For adults 20 years old and older, BMI is interpreted using standard weight status categories that are the same for all ages and for both men and women. For children and teens, on the other hand, the interpretation of BMI is both age and sex-specific.
Download a BMI Chart for Adults
This BMI chart for adults is a great resource to put around your office, clinic, waiting room, or anywhere else where patients will see it. Use to determine the BMIs of your patients and to start conversations about the importance of maintaining a healthy weight.
Interactive BMI calculatorOur sister-site, My Eat Smart Move More, has an interactive BMI calculator. You can put in your weight and height, and our calculator will provide your BMI and its corresponding weight status category.