What is a Body Mass Index Calculator?

B. Winger

A body mass index (BMI) calculator is used to calculate a person’s healthy body weight based on height. After inputting height and age into a body mass index calculator, a person can discover whether he or she is underweight, overweight, or average. BMI calculators typically are easy to use and highly reliable, making them one of the most-used tools among medical professionals for ascertaining a person's ideal body weight.

A healthy body mass index is essential for good health.
A healthy body mass index is essential for good health.

It is possible for most people to calculate their body mass index from home by using one of the many body mass calculators available on the Internet. Online BMI calculators, however, can range in their accuracy. By choosing a calculator that is publicly endorsed by a prominent name in the medical field, the customer usually can rest assured that the information he or she receives is current.

Someone with a BMI under 18.5 is considered underweight.
Someone with a BMI under 18.5 is considered underweight.

Body mass index calculators are increasingly popular as a weight assessment tool, both in the home and in the medical office, because they are simple to use. The online versions only require that the customer enter their age and height in order to compute a result. A body mass calculator in use in a medical office may be slightly more complicated, but even these calculators simply require the user to input information.

Wrestlers must keep their bodies lean and maintain minimal levels of body fat.
Wrestlers must keep their bodies lean and maintain minimal levels of body fat.

In order to calculate body mass, a body mass index calculator relies on body mass index charts that plot height versus weight. As such, these calculators are best suited for customers that have an average body frame. Customers with an average body frame will generally get the best results from BMI calculators, because the customers fit perfectly on the original body mass index charts.

Someone's BMI may indicate that they are overweight.
Someone's BMI may indicate that they are overweight.

Customers that do not have an average build may get results from a body mass index calculator that are not reflective of their true health level. Results often end up skewed when the customer has an unusual build, such as when he or she is unusually muscular. Ideal weight for people with non-average builds usually should be determined by a medical professional.

Excessive alcohol consumption over a period of time may cause a high body mass index and  obesity.
Excessive alcohol consumption over a period of time may cause a high body mass index and obesity.

While there are a few exceptions, body mass index calculators continue to be one of the easiest and simplest ways to decide whether an individual is at a healthy weight. By using a body mass index chart instead of a simple height-weight chart, a body mass index calculator arrives at a much more accurate result than older weight assessment methods. BMI calculators usually are accessible to all levels of consumers. These calculators can be important tools that the majority of people can use to accurately manage their weight.

Breastfed infants are less likely to become overweight children.
Breastfed infants are less likely to become overweight children.
BMI calculators are easy and simple ways to decide whether an individual is at a healthy weight.
BMI calculators are easy and simple ways to decide whether an individual is at a healthy weight.

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Discussion Comments

anon77367

Thanks for all of the great information on the BMI Calculator. I have been using an online BMI calculator from a weight loss website,

The BMI calculator is a great way to calculate your body mass and percentage of fat and jump start your workouts to lower your body fat and/or increase your muscle size.

Breaking it down for people looking to enhance their weight loss is a great idea; it helps me comprehend the topic a little better (which is good right?)

Thanks for your community contribution, I appreciate it.-- Tom

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