To determine how much you should weigh (your ideal body weight) several factors should be considered, including age, muscle-fat ratio, height, sex, and bone density.
It’s worth remembering that one person’s ideal body weight may be completely different to another’s. If you compare yourself to family and friends you risk either aiming too high (if you are surrounded by obese or overweight people), or too low (if everyone around you works as a fashion model). Even comparing yourself with people outside your immediate surroundings may not work.
There are many ways to measure:
- Body mass index.
- Waist-hip ratio.
- Body-fat percentage.
1. Body mass index (BMI) A number of websites provide an online tool to calculate BMI.
2. Waist-hip ratio, or WHR, looks at the ratio of waist circumference to hip circumference. This is an important factor for health. A higher proportion of fat collected around the waist has been linked with a higher risk of cardiovascular problems. In other words, it is healthier to be “pear-shaped” than “apple-shaped.”
Comparing hip and waist measurements may be a better predictor of health.
The waist is measured at its narrowest point, and if there is no narrow point, it is measured approximately 1 inch above the belly button. Hips are measured at the widest point of the buttocks. The waist measurement is divided by the hip measurement.
If an adult female has a 27-inch waist and 36-inch hips, her WHR is 27 divided by 36, giving her a WHR of 0.75.
- Below 0.9 indicates a very low risk of cardiovascular problems
- From 0.9 to 0.99 suggests a moderate risk
- Above 1 implies a high risk.
- Below 0.8 means a very low risk
- From 0.8 to 0.89 indicates a moderate risk
- 0.9 or above suggests a high risk of cardiovascular problems.
3. Body-fat percentage is calculated by weighing a person’s total fat, and dividing it by their weight.Essential fat is the fat we need for survival. In adult women the total proportion of essential fat is between 10 percent and 13 percent. In adult men, essential fat makes up between 2 percent and 5 percent of the body.