What’s my ideal weight?

At Team Lindora, one of the most frequent questions we receive is, “How much should I weigh?”

The Body Mass Index (BMI) is a common measurement used by clinicians and health experts as a standard for determining healthy body weight. It is now considered one of the best indicators of risk for developing serious diseases such as stroke, heart disease, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome.

The National Institutes of Health considers a BMI of 25 or greater to be a health risk. A BMI of about 22 is considered optimal for health. Individuals with a BMI of 25 to 29.9 are considered overweight, and individuals with a BMI of 30 or greater are considered obese. (Note: this information does not apply to individuals who are unusually muscular, such as body builders and professional athletes.)

The easiest way to determine your BMI is to consult a BMI chart (such as the one in the Lean for Life Phase One: Weight Loss book), or to use a BMI calculator such as the one found on the Lindora.com website, at http://www.LindoraOnline.com/html/health_tips.cfm

Whereas an adult’s BMI is based on their height and weight, a child or teen’s BMI is calculated differently, according to their age, gender, stage or growth and other factors. A helpful tool is the BMI calculator at the Center for Disease Control website, which offers tools for determining BMI for both adults and children: http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/bmi/

You may also calculate your (adult) BMI by using the following method:

To find your BMI, follow these steps (you may want to print these instructions and fill in the blanks):

• Divide your weight in pounds (without shoes or clothing) by 2.2. This will give you your weight in kilograms. Write that answer here: ___________.

• Divide your height in inches (without shoes) by 39.4 and then square the result. This will convert your height to meters squared. Write that answer here: ___________.

• Divide your weight in kilograms by your height in meters squared (answer to Step 1 divided by answer to Step 2). This is your BMI.

There is a range for ideal weight; where you feel comfortable within that range is up to you. Take your age and activity level into account, too. Even modest weight loss of 5 to 10 pounds can produce noticeable improvements in health and well being–just imagine the effects of carrying around a 10 pound bag of sand each day!