Many people want to know the answer to this question: How much should I weigh? However, there is not one ideal healthy weight for each person, because a number of different factors play a role.
These include age, muscle-fat ratio, height, sex, and body fat distribution, or body shape.
Having excess weight can affect a person’s risk of developing a number of health conditions, including obesity, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular problems.
Not everyone who carries extra weight develops health problems. However, researchers believe that while these extra pounds might not currently impact a person’ s health, a lack of management could lead to problems in the future.
Read on to find out about four ways of working out your ideal weight.
Method 1: Body mass index (BMI)
BMI takes into account both height and weight but not body composition.
Body mass index (BMI) is a common tool for deciding whether a person has an appropriate body weight. It measures a person’s weight in relation to their height.
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH):
A BMI of less than 18.5 means that a person is underweight.
A BMI of between 18.5 and 24.9 is ideal.
A BMI of between 25 and 29.9 is overweight.
A BMI over 30 indicates obesity.
Body mass index calculator
To calculate your BMI, you can use our BMI calculators or review our charts below.
1) Metric BMI Calculator
2) Imperial BMI Calculator
Weight and height guide chart
The following weight and height chart uses BMI tables from the National Institute of Health to determine how much a person’s weight should be for their height.
|91 to 115 lbs.||119 to 138 lbs.||143 to 186 lbs.||191 to 258 lbs.|
|94 to 119 lbs.||124 to 143 lbs.||148 to 193 lbs.||198 to 267 lbs.|
|97 to 123 lbs.||128 to 148 lbs.||153 to 199 lbs.||204 to 276 lbs.|
|100 to 127 lbs.||132 to 153 lbs.||158 to 206 lbs.||211 to 285 lbs.|
|104 to 131 lbs.||136 to 158 lbs.||164 to 213 lbs.||218 to 295 lbs.|
|107 to 135 lbs.||141 to 163 lbs.||169 to 220 lbs.||225 to 304 lbs.|
|110 to 140 lbs.||145 to 169 lbs.||174 to 227 lbs.||232 to 314 lbs.|
|114 to 144 lbs.||150 to 174 lbs.||180 to 234 lbs.||240 to 324 lbs.|
|118 to 148 lbs.||155 to 179 lbs.||186 to 241 lbs.||247 to 334 lbs.|
|121 to 153 lbs.||159 to 185 lbs.||191 to 249 lbs.||255 to 344 lbs.|
|125 to 158 lbs.||164 to 190 lbs.||197 to 256 lbs.||262 to 354 lbs.|
|128 to 162 lbs.||169 to 196 lbs.||203 to 263 lbs.||270 to 365 lbs.|
|132 to 167 lbs.||174 to 202 lbs.||209 to 271 lbs.||278 to 376 lbs.|
|136 to 172 lbs.||179 to 208 lbs.||215 to 279 lbs.||286 to 386 lbs.|
|140 to 177 lbs.||184 to 213 lbs.||221 to 287 lbs.||294 to 397 lbs.|
|144 to 182 lbs.||189 to 219 lbs.||227 to 295 lbs.||302 to 408 lbs.|
|148 to 186 lbs.||194 to 225 lbs.||233 to 303 lbs.||311 to 420 lbs.|
|152 to 192 lbs.||200 to 232 lbs.||240 to 311 lbs.||319 to 431 lbs.|
|156 to 197 lbs.||205 to 238 lbs.||246 to 320 lbs.||328 to 443 lbs.|
|BMI||19 to 24||25 to 29||30 to 39||40 to 54|
How useful is body mass index (BMI)?
What is wrong with using BMI to calculate a healthy weight? Find out more about this measure and its uses and drawbacks.
What is the problem with BMI?
BMI is a very simple measurement. While it takes height into consideration, it does not account for factors such as:
waist or hip measurements
proportion or distribution of fat
proportion of muscle mass
These, too, can have an impact on health.
High-performance athletes, for example, tend to be very fit and have little body fat. They can have a high BMI because they have more muscle mass, but this does not mean they are overweight.
BMI can also offer a rough idea of whether or not a person’s weight is healthy, and it is useful for measuring trends in population studies.
However, it should not be the only measure for an individual to assess whether their weight is ideal or not.
A person’s waist-hip ratio (WHR) can give an idea about whether they have more abdominal fat than is healthy.
A person’s waist-hip measurement compares their waist size with that of their hips.
Research has shown that people who have more body fat around their middle are more likely to develop cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes.
The higher the waist measurement in proportion to the hips, the greater the risk.
For this reason, the waist-hip ratio (WHR) is a useful tool for calculating whether a person has a healthy weight and size.
Measure your waist-hip ratio
1. Measure around the waist in the narrowest part, usually just above the belly button.
2. Divide this measurement by the measurement around your hip at its widest part.
If a person’s waist is 28 inches and their hips are 36 inches, they will divide 28 by 36. This will give them 0.77.
What does it mean?
How WHR affects the risk of cardiovascular disease (CVD) is different for men and women, because they tend to have different body shapes.
Evidence suggests that WHR can impact the risk of CVD as follows:
Below 0.9: The risk of cardiovascular health problems is low.
From 0.9 to 0.99: The risk is moderate.
At 1.0 or over: The risk is high.
Below 0.8: The risk is low.
From 0.8 to 0.89: The risk is moderate.
At 0.9 or above: The risk is high.
However, these figures can vary, depending on the source and the population to which they apply.
WHR may be a better predictor of heart attacks and other health risks than BMI, which does not take fat distribution into consideration.
A study of health records for 1,349 people in 11 countries, published in 2013, showed that those with a higher WHR also have a greater risk of medical and surgical complications relating to colorectal surgery.
However, WHR does not accurately measure a person’s total body fat percentage, or their muscle-to-fat ratio.