# What is BMI and How the BMI Calculator Works?

Body mass index (BMI), also known as the Quetelet index, is simply a number calculated based on an individual’s weight and height, a number that fairly represents the present human body fat in your body. Invented between 1830 and 1850 as part of social physics experiment, it is the person’s body weight divided by the square of his or her height.

BMI can be an alternative means for measuring body fat – it is an affordable and easy to perform technique for identifying potential weight problems in adults, though it is usually followed by more assessments to be able to pinpoint an actual diagnosis.

What is the BMI Calculator?

The BMI Calculator is a mechanism that files people into certain weight categories. These categories determine your weight situation and can give you an idea whether or not you need to take weight loss pills.

BMI computation between men and women, children and adults can be calculated differently based on various elements. For adults aged 20 years and above, BMI calculation uses a set of standard weight categories that covers all ages of both genders. After you put in your weight, height, and gender, it gives you your BMI and allows you to determine which category you fall under:

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

For children and teenagers, however, their BMI results are more specific in terms of both gender and age. Those who get an overweight and obese result are more likely to proceed with extreme weight loss measures that usually begin with taking in weight loss pills.

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Steps to Take After Computing for Your BMI

When you are on a quest to attain the appropriate weight ideal for your height, age and gender, you should not stop at just finding out your BMI results. It is also not the end of the world if you find out that your BMI is higher than normal. Though the relationship between your BMI result and your actual body fatness can be considered close enough, gender, race and age actually have a huge impact on its accuracy.

For instance, a man and a woman can have the exact same BMI result, but in most cases that have this situation, women are inclined to have more body fat than men. When it comes to age, older people usually have a higher body fat level than younger adults despite having the same BMI number. When you consider a person’s lifestyle, an active athlete may have a high BMI just because he or she has more muscles, not body fat.

Before you ingest weight loss pills because of your BMI result, remember that it is only one factor that can help you find out if you have tendencies for weight-related illnesses. There are a lot more tests you can take to find out more, and you really should do so before self-medicating.

These tests may include the skin fold thickness measurement, a simple diet re-evaluation, a physical activity test, a review of your family history, and lots of other health screening procedures your family doctor can hook you up with.