Simple ways to find out if you are overweight or obese

Being overweight and being obese both have many bad health consequences. An obese person has a higher amount of body fat than an overweight person.

A person is said to be overweight or obese when he or she has an abnormally high amount of body fat that is not healthy.

There are different ways that the amount of body fat a person has can be measured; some of the simple ways of doing so are: The waist to hip ratio, and the body mass index.

How to measure your waist to hip ratio:

  • Use a measuring tape to measure your waist circumference and also to measure your hip; then divide your waist circumference by the circumference of your hip.
  • If you are a man and the value you get for your waist to hip ratio is less than 0.90, then your body fat is normal; this means that you are not overweight or obese.
  • If you are a woman and your waist to hip ratio is less than 0.85, then your body fat is normal meaning you are not overweight or obese.
  • A waist to hip ratio of 0.80 to 0.84 in a woman is overweight and a waist to hip ratio of 0.90 to 0.99 in a man is overweight.
  • If the waist to hip ratio in a man is greater than 0.99, then he is obese. If it is 0.85 and above in a woman, then she is obese.

How to measure your body mass index (BMI):

  • Measure your weight and your height.
  • Then divide your weight (in kilogrammes) by the square of your height (in meters) – that is, weight divided by height*height. The value you get after this calculation is your body mass index.
  • If your body mass index is lower than 18.5, then you are underweight. A BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is normal but a BMI that is between 25 and 29.9 is overweight. If your BMI is 30 and above, then you are obese.

Some of the consequences that arise from being overweight or being obese are different cancers, arthritis, diabetes, stroke and heart diseases. And so you see that it is very important to check the amount if body fat you have and maintain a healthy weight so as to avoid these consequences.

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Somso Kizor enjoys words. She loves reading good books and writing - amongst other things. Somso is passionate about educating people about their health; as this would reduce the burden of diseases and deaths (hence, suffering) all over the world. Let's not forget the popular saying that goes "health is wealth." For more details, send an email to