What are some ways to assess my weight?

Healthcare providers use several different measures to assess body weight. Common ways of looking at body weight include the following:
  • Body mass index (BMI). This is a measure of body mass based on your height and weight. It's helpful in showing whether you are overweight.
  • Waist circumference and waist-hip ratio. Measuring your waist and hips can show where your body tends to store fat. People who store body fat around the waist have more risk of heart disease. Generally, men with a waist over 40 inches and nonpregnant women with a waist over 35 inches are at higher risk.
  • Body composition measures. Several different methods -- for example, skin fold tests and underwater weighing -- can check how much of your weight is due to muscle or fat.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.