Healthy Weight for My Height and Age

Medically reviewed by

Dr. Kevin Aister DO

Apr 21, 2020

Determining a healthy weight for your height and age can be tricky. Most formulas, such as the BMI, can only offer the roughest guidelines. The fact is that most people can be healthy and happy within a range of weights, regardless of their age. With that said, some guidance may be useful in determining whether your weight is healthy for your age.

In general, very high weights can be associated with health problems. This correlation can become more pronounced with age, as older people are more vulnerable to issues such as heart disease, diabetes, and other weight-related disorders. For this reason, it is a good idea to keep an eye on your weight and aim to stay within a healthy range.

Is my BMI healthy for my age?

The BMI, or body mass index, is a widely used formula for estimating whether or not a person is at a healthy weight. A BMI lower than 18.5 is considered underweight, while a BMI of 25 or over is deemed overweight. A BMI greater than 30 is regarded as obese. To find your BMI, you need to know your current weight and height. You can then use a BMI chart or an online calculator to find your BMI.

The BMI is not a perfect solution for finding your healthy weight range as it does not take into consideration your level of muscle mass. For example, a person who engages in weight-lifting and who has a lot of muscle might have a BMI that’s over 25 or even 30, while still being very healthy and certainly not obese.

What is your body fat percentage?

Another way of determining whether you’re at a healthy weight for your height and age is the body mass percentage. This measures the amount of fat you have as a percentage of your total weight. It may be more useful for some people than BMI, especially if you’re very active. For example, a male athlete might be expected to have a body fat percentage of less than 13 percent, while a more sedentary person might be expected to have a body fat percentage of 18 to 25 percent.

As well as factoring in your activity level, body fat percentages also take into account differences between the sexes. A healthy weight for males may be different for a healthy weight for females by age, which will be reflected in the percentage of body fat.

Finding your waist-to-height ratio

Another way of determining whether or not you are at a healthy weight for your height and age is to find your waist-to-height ratio or WtHR. This is a better predictor of health outcomes than BMI. In general, people with a WtHR of around 0.5 are healthier at any age than those whose WtHR is higher. The WtHR helps you to determine how much additional stored fat you are carrying around your abdomen, which is significant in determining your risk of certain diseases such as diabetes.

Finding your waist-to-hip ratio

Similarly to the waist-to-height ratio, the waist-to-hip ratio (WHR) aims at estimating the overall disposition of body fat. Your waist should generally be narrower than your hips, indicating that you are not carrying your body fat around your abdomen. As with the WtHR, the WHR gives a better indication of your overall health and well-being than BMI, as well as predicting your future health outcomes more accurately.

Is my weight healthy for my age?

Of course, no single ratio can conclusively tell you if you’re a healthy weight for your height and age. It’s best to discuss your weight and overall health with your doctor. He or she will be able to interpret a healthy weight chart by age, give you advice based on your current measurements, and can provide support and insight if you need to work on [weight management](https://www.preventiongeneration.com/tag/Weight-Management). Making significant lifestyle changes, such as going on a diet or embarking on a course of exercise, is something you should do under medical advice.

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