A Body Mass Index (BMI) is calculated from your height and weight. BMI is an estimate of body fat and is a good gauge of your risk for diseases that can occur with more body fat. The higher your BMI, the higher your risk for certain diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, gallstones, breathing problems, and certain cancers.
Although BMI can be used for most men and women, it does have some limits:
Adult - Underweight (BMI under 18.5)
You are under the optimum weight for your height. You could probably afford to gain a little weight, but you should discuss this with your General Practitioner as a first step.
This can be a normal situation especially if you eat a healthy diet, and are active and energetic. However, being underweight can also be a sign of a problem and you should talk to your General Practitioner to investigate this fully.
Adult - Healthy Weight (BMI between 18.5 and 24.9)
You have a healthy weight for your height. Eating a balanced diet and leading a physically active lifestyle can help maintain a healthy weight.
Adult - Overweight (BMI 25 and over)
You are over the optimum weight for your height. This may lead to negative consequences for your health.
Since BMI doesn't directly measure body fat, it is possible to be overweight but not obese. If you are concerned about being overweight you should talk to your General Practitioner as a first step.
Adult - Obese (BMI of 30 and over)
You are over optimum weight for your height. You may be facing health risks, so talk to your General Practitioner to help you achieve a healthier weight.