The Body Mass Index is a number may give an idea of your body fat; it is calculated based on your height and weight, and is used to assess if the amount of fat you have in your body is a health risk. A normal body mass index is considered between 18.5 and 24.9.
This number determines whether a person has low weight, is healthy, overweight or obese. It is important to note that this number is not a direct measurement of the amount of fat in your body. And in the case of muscular people like athletes who have a high BMI value, it is simply because they have greater muscle mass, and not necessarily fat.
If you are overweight or obese, you are at increased risk for certain diseases such as high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, type II diabetes, cholesterol, and certain cancers. It is important to measure the abdominal circumference at the navel to estimate if you suffer what is called metabolic syndrome.
Having a BMI too low is also bad for your health and you must change your daily habits to raise it. You should consult your doctor to for proper advising.
BMI (Body Mass Index): It is a calculation of weight and height to determine and assess excess weight in adults.
Obesity: It means having too much body fat. It occurs when more calories are ingested than are lost.
Overweight: unlike obesity, it means weighing too much. Muscle, bone, fat and water in the body determine weight.
Metabolic Syndrome: Measuring the waist circumference at the navel helps determine if you suffer from metabolic syndrome, which indicates an increased risk, specifically, of heart disease and type II diabetes.
For women, there is greater risk with a circumference greater than 35 inches.
For men, there is greater risk with a circumference greater than 40 inches.
If your BMI is overweight (> 24):
Choose healthier options such as:
-Consume fewer calories. If you want to lose 1 or 2 pounds per week, you should consume 500 to 1,000 fewer calories per day.
-Replace saturated and trans fats for unsaturated fats.
-Replace white rice and flour with whole grains.
-Eat more fruits and vegetables.
-Drink water or skim milk instead of sodas or other sugary drinks.
-Drink 8 glasses of water a day and exercise.
If your BMI is underweight (< 18.5):
-Increase your daily intake of calories in a balanced way.
-Include fruits and vegetables in your diet.
-Add to your diet good carbs and fats like vegetable oils (olive, canola, flaxseed, sunflower, etc.), olives, avocados and nuts.
-Increase the consumption of low-fat protein: egg, chicken and turkey without the skin, seafood, lean beef, skim milk, yogurt and cheese.
-Eat more legumes such as lentils and beans.
-Eat moderate portions 5 times a day and exercise.