# How to Calculate Your Body Mass Index (BMI)

Knowing your body mass index (BMI) is important in maintaining a healthy weight. Your BMI can help you determine whether you are underweight, normal weight, overweight, or obese. Here’s how you can calculate your BMI:

## Step 1: Measure Your Weight

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Before you calculate your BMI, you need to know your weight in kilograms or pounds. To measure your weight, stand on a scale and record the number that appears.

## Step 2: Measure Your Height

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You also need to know your height in meters or feet and inches. To measure your height, stand up straight against a wall and use a tape measure to record your height from the floor to the top of your head.

## Step 3: Calculate Your BMI

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Once you have your weight and height measurements, you can calculate your BMI using the following formula:

BMI = weight (kg) ÷ height² (m²)

If you have your weight in pounds and your height in feet and inches, you can use this slightly different formula:

BMI = (weight (lbs) ÷ height² (in²)) x 703

For example, if you weigh 68 kilograms and are 1.75 meters tall, your BMI would be:

BMI = 68 ÷ (1.75 x 1.75) = 22.2

If you weigh 150 pounds and are 5 feet 6 inches tall, your BMI would be:

BMI = (150 ÷ (66 x 66)) x 703 = 24.2

## Step 4: Interpret Your BMI

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Now that you have calculated your BMI, you can use the following categories to interpret your results:

• Underweight: BMI below 18.5
• Normal weight: BMI between 18.5 and 24.9
• Overweight: BMI between 25 and 29.9
• Obese: BMI 30 or higher

If your BMI falls outside the normal weight range, talk to your doctor about developing a plan to achieve a healthier weight.

## Factors that Affect BMI

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It’s important to note that BMI is not a perfect measure of health. There are several factors that can affect your BMI, including:

• Muscle mass: Because muscle weighs more than fat, athletes and bodybuilders may have a higher BMI despite being in good health.
• Age: In general, older adults tend to have a higher BMI than younger adults, even if they have the same amount of body fat.
• Gender: Women tend to have a higher percentage of body fat than men, which can affect their BMI.
• Height: Tall people may have a lower BMI than shorter people, even if they have the same amount of body fat.