Friday, November 1, 2013

What Should I Weigh?

When I meet a new weight loss client, one of the first questions I ask is, “How much weight would you ideally like to lose?” Usually they turn around and ask me, “Well, how much do I need to lose?”

My primary goal is to get my clients down to a point where their weight will no longer increase their risk of chronic diseases like heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and cancer. A simple and powerful measure of how your weight will affect your risk of disease is the Body Mass Index.

Your body mass index is your weight in kilograms divided by your height in meters squared. If your body mass index is 25 or lower, your weight is considered normal. If it falls between 25.1 and 29.9, you are considered overweight. If it is 30 or more, you are considered obese.

Risk of chronic disease begins to increase with BMI’s over 25 and rises sharply with BMI’s over 30. I always have my clients shoot for a BMI under 25. While the BMI measure isn’t perfect, there is a ton of solid research behind the numbers, so I always have my clients start there.  

The Center for Disease Control has a free BMI calculator (click here). You can use this calculator to figure out your BMI today and also what weight you need to reach to get it under 25. There are also a variety of BMI calculator apps for your Smartphone. Just go to your app store and type in “BMI calculator” and you’ll get a number of options to download, many of which are free.






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