People spend a lot of money and time trying to get fit and feel healthy. But BMI for women may be the key to solving this seemingly elusive paradox. BMI = body mass index. You’ve probably heard about BMI before, but chances are you don’t know what it is, how to calculate it, and why it’s important. Let’s start with the basics. BMI is a calculation of your body fat based on your height and weight. So if you know your height and weight (and be honest, no shaving off a few pounds to make yourself feel better) you can figure out your BMI using a calculator that does the math for you. So, what does this number mean? If your BMI is too high it indicates that you are overweight or obese, and if it is too low then you are considered underweight. If you’re in the recommended range of 18.5 to 24.9 then you are of a normal, healthy weight.
According to the World Heart Federation, “If you are a woman, a BMI greater than 21 may adversely affect your heart’s health. If your BMI is more than 30, you are obese and at serious risk of cardiovascular disease. If your BMI is below 18.5 your are probably underweight.” That said, it is not foolproof. BMI for women does not take into account muscle build, meaning that if you two women weigh the same amount but one woman is a fitness professional and the other woman is out of shape, their BMIs will be the same even though that athletic female may have very little body fat. Bottom line: BMI is not a perfect science but it is a great way to assess your body fat compared to the rest of the population so that you can be sure you are in a healthy range and are not at risk for several serious health complications. Here are 10 reasons (which are really just body health tips) why every woman should know her BMI.
- To Assess Your Weight
While BMI is not a perfect way to measure your health (BMI does not directly assess your fat because muscle is denser than fat), it is a pretty good predictor of your body fat levels and how your body compares to the larger population. Again, it has its flaws, but finding out your BMI is easy, free and a good start to achieving a healthy weight and healthy lifestyle.
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