Trainers, fitness freaks and gym junkies throw around the term BMI more often than they hit the gym. But what does it really mean and how should it affect your diet and workout plans? Here’s everything you need to know about BMI for women!
What is a BMI?
BMI stands for Body Mass Index. In other words, it’s a number that demonstrates how healthy your weight is for your height. It doesn’t measure fat directly, but if your BMI is higher or lower than average, it’s a pretty safe bet that you either need to gain or lose weight to achieve a healthy number.
Why is BMI important?
Your BMI is important because it’s a simple way to get a pretty accurate idea of the overall state of your body. Unhealthy BMI levels could indicate issues with blood pressure, heart disease, high cholesterol and even sleep problems.
How can I calculate my BMI?
You can find out what your BMI is by visiting the National Institutes of Health’s Body Mass Index Calculator. Simply enter your height and weight and out pops your BMI.
A normal BMI is between 18.5 and 24.9. Numbers under 18.5 are considered unhealthy and underweight. BMIs coming in between 25 and 29.9 fall into the overweight category. Anything over 30 is considered obese.
Now that I know my BMI, what should I do?
If your BMI is less than 18.5, you should visit a doctor. You’re likely unhealthily underweight. Your doctor can suggest dietary or lifestyle changes to help you get the number up.
If your BMI is between 18.5 and 24.9, keep doing what you’re doing. You’re in the healthy Body Mass Index number range. Odds are, you already maintain a well-balanced diet and workout from time to time. If so, good for you! If not, just because your BMI is in a good place doesn’t mean there’s not room for improvement. Remember, a BMI only measures weight. It disregards nutrients and blood pressure, among other important health aspects. No matter where your BMI falls, you should always focus on eating right and exercising at least 20 minutes, every other day.
If your BMI falls between 25 and 29.9, you’re overweight. It’s time to make some adjustments to your lifestyle. Amp up the workouts, and cut back on calories while adding in nutrients. Remember, it’s about making sustainable changes in your everyday life. If you’re really having problems lowering your BMI, visit a doctor. A doctor will be able to recommend customized plans and goals to help you get healthy.
If your BMI is higher than 30, you are technically obese. While you should definitely add more exercise and some dietary restrictions to your life, depending on your personal health, sudden changes could be dangerous. It’s best to consult a doctor and ask for recommendations on how to change your lifestyle to lead a healthier one.
-“Calculate your Body Mass Index” NIH:
-“About BMI for Adults” CDC
-“What is BMI?” Live Science
-“What is BMI and Why is BMI Important?” Ecu.edu
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