Using a BMI calculator is a great way to get a snapshot of your overall weight and health. It also determines where you fall on the weight spectrum that goes from “underweight” to “obese.”

The Body Mass Index (“BMI“) came about in the early 1970’s. It became an effective tool for doctors to discuss weight with patients in a more objective manner.

Instead of a subjective weight assessment on the part of the doctor, the BMI is calculated strictly by a patient’s height and weight.

Even more, this paved the way for patients to get a uniform diagnosis regardless of which doctor they saw, including consistent results from second opinions.

You don’t need to be a doctor to calculate your BMI. It’s easy to do it yourself to see how it works (or use a BMI calculator).

Here’s how it would work for someone who – let’s say – weighed 178 lbs. and was 69″ tall.

  1. Square the height (69*69=4,761).
  2. Divide the weight by the squared height (178/4,761=0.0374).
  3. Multiply the result by 703 (0.0374*703=26.3). This is the BMI. 

Then you simply look up where your BMI score falls in the following list:

If your BMI is less than 18.5, you’re underweight.

If your BMI is 18.5-25, you’re considered healthy.

If your BMI is 25-30, you’re overweight.

If your BMI is over 30, you’re obese.

The BMI score isn’t perfect, but it is a great guideline to see where you’re at.

Fortunately, you can use an online BMI calculator list for you to try. They only take a few moments to plug in your info, and they’ll tell you exactly where you measure up on the Body Mass Index – now give it a try!