Body Mass Index Categories

Body Mass Index (BMI) and Weight Loss

Here are a few guidelines for losing/gaining weight depending on your BMI.

UNDERWEIGHT – BMI Under 20 (Men); Under 19 (Women)

Anyone who is underweight is at risk of underweight-related illness – such as disappearance of periods (women), bone loss, malnutrition and other conditions. The lower your BMI the greater these risks. For a full explanation, see your doctor.


You are inside the healthy weight range for your height. Your risk of weight-related health problems is very small. But check your Waist Circumference and keep it within the recommended limits.


If your BMI is 25-27 you have an increased risk of weight-related health problems. Try to avoid gaining weight – especially if you have any other
Weight Risk Factors. If your BMI is 27-29.99 your risk of health problems is higher. Check your Waist Circumference and keep it with the recommended limits.

OBESE – BMI 30-34.99

A BMI of 30-39.99 means you are obese and your risk of weight-related illness is significantly increased, especially if you have a larger than recommended waist circumference or any other Weight Risk Factors. Consider reducing your weight by 5-10 percent. Such a weight reduction will result in considerable health improvements. It is very important that you see your doctor for a full explanation of your weight-reduction options.


A BMI of 40+ means you have an extremely high risk of weight-related disease and premature death. You may already be suffering from a weight-related illness. It is very important to see your doctor and get specialist help for your condition. Weight Loss Surgery, drugs, counseling, very-low-calorie diets are all possible options.

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