it’s important to know exactly where you’re starting from.
The Body Mass Index or BMI is a system used to measure your percentage of body fat, and to determine if you are at a healthy weight — using your height, weight, age and gender.The results of the index will tell you, generally, if you’ve got a healthy body fat percentage and what your ideal ratio of fat-to-muscle probably is.
Though there are other methods that are more accurate for learning what your current percentage of body fat is, the body mass index formula can be a convenient way just to get a quick, general idea.
Is Your Current Weight a Healthy Weight?
Basically, your Body Mass Index is a really simple way for you to tell if you are underweight, normal or overweight.
There are plenty of free BMI calculators on the web that will tell you your approximate Body Mass Index, but you can even do the math yourself:
——————————————————————— x 703 = BMI
(Height in inches) x (Height In Inches)
You can then compare your BMI number to the list below:
- ▸ 18.4 or lower: Underweight
- ▸ 18.5 to 24.9: Normal weight
- ▸ 25 to 29.9: Overweight
- ▸ 30 or higher: Obese
“…when my local gym was offering a
free Body Mass Index test I jumped
at the chance to get tested”
Of course, our bodies are all different genetically, and this calculation doesn’t take into account how much of your body is actual fat and not muscle (and it it is therefore not always suitable for athletes).
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Getting Your Own Body Mass Index TestedWe sent our own Sean Cameron out into the field, to see what it was like to get your Body Mass Index (BMI) tested. Here is what he reported:
“To get a more accurate result you can take a Body Mass Index test using a machine. When my local gym was offering a free Body Mass Index test I jumped at the chance to get tested.
My own personal health journey started when I married my vegan wife last year. Not stocking meat and dairy in the fridge meant 18 pounds have dropped-off of me!
I remember looking at my Body Mass Index before and being a high normal so it was time to see how much my body has changed.
I believe it’s important for men to keep an objective eye on their body fat. The mirror deceives! Many of us think we’re thinner than we really are, while others see fat where there is none. But in my opinion excessive belly fat can be a sign of toxicity and potential future health challenges, so it’s good to know where you really stand in terms of your fat-to-muscle ratio.
The friendly Gym Instructor imputed my details into a Body Mass Index monitor (as you would in the BMI equation). I then held the machine’s two metal handles so it could calculate my body fat. It does this by sending an electric current through your body tissues and measures the resistance to calculate your total body water, and then determines your fat-free body mass.
If the words ‘electric current’ had you worried, don’t worry – I didn’t feel a thing.
You can easily buy one of these machines online but it’s important to use it correctly for a truly accurate result. Luckily I had an expert to guide me or I’d have just held it like a Mario Kart controller.
My result was 16.3 percent which is normal for my gender and age (11% to 21%). This meant I had a Body Mass Index of 21.6. which my instructor described as “perfect” – Naturally, I rushed home to tell the wife.”
Check out your Body Mass Index with a free online fat calculator or contact your gym to see if they offer this service.