How does your weight stack up? Los Angeles based nutritionist Alyse Levine has provided the tools for you to find out.
BMI stands for body mass index. It is a measure of your weight status taking into account your height. Enter your height and weight (pounds) to assess your BMI:
Where does your weight fall?
Underweight = <18.5
Normal weight = 18.5-24.9
Overweight = 25-29.9
Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater
If you are underweight, overweight, or obese you may be at greater risk for a number of diseases, including premature death, cardiovascular disease, high blood pressure, osteoarthritis, some cancers, and diabetes. However, BMI is only one factor among many that is correlated to disease risk. Having a slightly high BMI may not be a disease risk factor if one has a large muscle mass since BMI doesn’t take into account one’s muscle mass and muscle weighs more than fat. For example, two men could have the same weight and height, and therefore BMI, yet man #1 could have only 10% body fat while man #2 has 35% body fat… obviously man #2 has a greater risk of chronic diseases.
If you are concerned about your BMI, it is important that you speak with your doctor and a nutritionist to determine your level of risk since BMI is only one part of the big picture.
Waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) looks at the proportion of fat stored on your body around your waist and hip. It is a simple but useful measure of fat distribution. Most people store their body fat in two distinct ways: around their middle (apple shape) and around their hips (pear shape).
Having an apple shape (carrying extra weight around the stomach) is riskier for your health than having a pear shape (carrying extra weight around your hips or thighs). This is because body shape and health risk are linked. If you have more weight around your waist you have a greater risk of lifestyle related diseases such as heart disease and diabetes than those with weight around their hips. Use the following WHR calculator to find out if your WHR puts you at increased health risk:
What is your health risk based on WHR?
Low Risk: Your shape puts you at reduced risk of coronary heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Frequently referred to as pear shape, you tend to keep fat off your midsection and more on your hips. Your body does not convert this lower body fat as readily as midsection fat, which keeps cholesterol down.
Moderate Risk: Your shape puts you at a slightly increased risk of coronary heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Frequently referred to as apple shape, you tend to keep more fat at your midsection and less on your hips. Your body converts this upper body fat to energy whenever your body runs short. This raises cholesterol and blood pressure.
High Risk: Your shape puts you at increased risk of coronary heart disease, diabetes and stroke. Frequently referred to as apple shape, you tend to keep fat at your midsection and less on your hips. Your body converts this upper body fat to energy whenever your body runs short. This raises cholesterol and blood pressure.