A Note About Body Mass Index (BMI)

According to my Body Mass Index (BMI), which was 37 on my initial start date Aug. 22, 2011, I was listed in the category of Obese Class II (BMI of 35-39.99). While BMI is not exact, it is a fairly accurate indicator for an average guy like myself. Body fat percentage is a much better gauge. Since a bodybuilder with less than nine per cent body fat can have a BMI greater than 25, he might be categorized as overweight, BMI is not reliable as a sole measure. It's a great start, but depending on what your focus is in your personal body structuring plan, you should pair it with measurements of weight and body fat percentage. I bought a Withings Body Scale to do just that.

Here's a fancy chart that shows the BMI zones:

Body Mass Index Chart

Here's how it's explained:

The body mass index (BMI), or Quetelet index, is a heuristic proxy for human body fat based on an individual's weight and height. BMI does not actually measure the percentage of body fat. It was invented between 1830 and 1850 by the BelgianpolymathAdolphe Quetelet during the course of developing "social physics". Body mass index is defined as the individual's body weight divided by the square of his or her height. The formulae universally used in medicine produce a unit of measure of kg/m2. BMI can also be determined using a BMI chart, which displays BMI as a function of weight (horizontal axis) and height (vertical axis) using contour lines for different values of BMI or colors for different BMI categories.

The different BMI categories are as follows:

  • Severely Underweight: BMI < 16
  • Underweight: BMI = 16-18.49
  • Normal: BMI = 18.5-25
  • Overweight: BMI = 25-29.99
  • Obese Class I: BMI = 30-34.99
  • Obese Class II: BMI = 35-39.99
  • Obese Class III: BMI > 40