Body Mass Index

Body mass index (BMI) is a measure of body fat based on height and weight that applies to adult men and women.  It is typically elevated in people with diabetes and prediabetes metabolic syndrome.

BMI weight categories that may lead to health problems:

  • Underweight = <18.5
  • Normal weight = 18.5–24.9
  • Overweight = 25–29.9
  • Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater

CDC  Body Mass Index calculator.

BMI can be used for most men and women, however there some limitations such as:

It may overestimate body fat in athletes and others who have a muscular build.  Muscle is heavier than fat, so an athlete may weigh more than someone of the same height, and therefore have a higher BMI, but this does not necessarily mean that they are overweight or in a higher risk category for medical problems.

It may underestimate body fat in older persons and others who have lost muscle. For example, those that are tall and frail due to aging or disease may have a low BMI, but this doesn’t mean they are healthy.

Ask your doctor what you can do to lower your BMI especially if you have diabetes or prediabetes metabolic syndrome.

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About Robert Creighton

Dr. Creighton is a podiatrist and foot surgeon with over 26 years in podiatric practice treating thousands of patients afflicted with the physiological, physical, and psychological side effects and complications of diabetes and pre-diabetes metabolic syndrome. He believes these disorders present a pressing public health concern that need to be more actively addressed in a multidisciplinary way. Dr. Creighton graduated from what is now the Temple University School of Podiatric Medicine after receiving his undergraduate degree in Biology. He is certified by the American Board of Foot and Ankle Surgery, a member of the American Public Health Association, an American College of Sports Medicine certified personal trainer and a Member of the American Nutrition Association.

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