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Understanding Your BMI – Body Mass Index

BMI stands for Body Mass Index. It is a calculation that takes into account your weight and height. The index is used as a screening tool or an indicator that measures body fatness.

Body Mass Index is known to be one of the most inexpensive methods of calculating the weight category of a person.

It is important to know your BMI and what category you fall in such as underweight, normal weight, overweight or obese. A high number often indicates high body fat which increases the risk for certain chronic health problems.

BMI Categories

According to the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and that with a BMI below 18.5 is underweight. People with a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 are considered to have a healthy or normal weight. Overweight adults have a BMI between 25 and 29.9. An adult with a BMI of 30 and above is considered obese.

Underweight = <18.5
Normal weight = 18.5-24.9
Overweight = 25-29.9
Obesity = BMI of 30 or greater
How is BMI Calculated?
For both adults and children, BMI is calculated the same way. The calculation is based on either the Imperial System of Measurement or the Metric System of Measurement. In the United States, we use the older Imperial System of Measurement where things are measured in feet, inches and pounds.

The two formulas are:

1. Imperial System of Measurement (pounds and inches):

Using the imperial system, BMI is calculated by dividing your weight in pounds (lbs) by your height in inches (in) squared and multiplying by a conversion factor of 703.

Formula: weight (lb) / [height (in)]2 x 703
Example: Weight = 200 lbs, Height = 5 feet 5 inches (65 inches)
Calculation: [200 ÷ (65)2] x 703 = 33.27 BMI
2. Metric System of Measurement (kilograms and meters):

Using the metric system, BMI is calculated by dividing your weight in kilograms (kg) by your height in meters (m) squared. Because height is commonly measured in centimeters, divide height in centimeters by 100 to obtain height in meters.

Formula: weight (kg) / [height (m)]2
Example: Weight = 68 kg, Height = 165 cm (1.65 m)
Calculation: 68 ÷ (1.65)2 = 24.98 BMI
Body Mass Index Chart
There are several online tools that can be used to calculate BMI easily and quickly. One of the more popular tools is called the BMI Chart or Body Mass Index Chart. People who are more visually oriented find the BMI Chart easy to read and understand.

It helps to categorize people on the basis of their weight as underweight, healthy weight, overweight and obese. For example, find your height along the left side of chart then locate your weight at the top. Next, slide your finger down until reach the BMI number at the intersection.

Why Does BMI Matter?

BMI has immense clinical relevance and is a useful measure of overweight and obesity. In general, having a high BMI increases the risk of developing a range of conditions linked with excess weight, including:

Chronic heart diseases
Type 2 diabetes
High blood pressure (hypertension)
High cholesterol levels
Gall bladder diseases
Stroke
Osteoporosis
Arthritis
Sleep apnea
Several types of cancer (breast, colon and prostate)
Conversely, having a BMI in the low range could indicate that your at risk of being malnourished. This means that your body may be deprived of vitamins, minerals and other important nutrients.
In addition to BMI, several other factors are also used to calculate imminent health risks associated with obesity and high body fat. Factors such as blood sugar level, family history of diseases, smoking, age, gender, level of activity and so forth.

High Body Mass Index is Linked to Diabetes

Researchers have linked obesity to heart diseases, cancer and type 2 diabetes. Obesity is no longer related to the age factor. Today there are a large number of younger people and children who are diagnosed as overweight and obese.

Even though the exact reason or cause of diabetes is still a mystery, obesity is one factor that increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes. Studies prove that people who are obese are 80% more likely to develop type 2 diabetes.

There is also a greater risk of developing the disease if the person has accumulated excess fat around the abdomen. It is also known as abdominal obesity.

Insulin resistance

Due to high abdominal fat, the cells release a particular type of chemical which are pro-inflammatory. These chemicals disrupt the function of cells that are responsive to insulin, making the body insulin resistant, which is the main symptom of diabetes mellitus.

Changes body metabolism

Excessive body fat is also known to change the overall metabolism of the body. Obesity causes the adipose or fat tissues in the body to release fat molecules into the blood stream. This reduces insulin sensitivity of the body.

Scientists also believe that obesity can cause pre-diabetes, a condition that develops into diabetes in the later stage.

Without regular exercise and a healthy diet, obesity can cause several ailments apart from diabetes within a short period of time. However, the great news is that by lowering BMI and reducing body weight, you can also reduce the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and other related health issues.

It is also possible to delay the onset of diabetes by exercising and losing weight gradually.

High Body Mass Index is Linked to Heart Diseases

Known to be one of the leading causes of death, heart diseases are directly linked to obesity. One of the most common types of heart disease occurs when the blood vessels that carry blood to the heart become narrow and clogged.

This prevents the heart from receiving the blood it requires for pumping. It can cause heart attacks, heart failure, abnormal heart rhythm and so forth. There are several types of heart diseases that occur mainly due to obesity.

Heart diseases are often linked to various other ailments such as high blood pressure or hypertension, high blood sugar and high cholesterol levels. All these ailments can eventually lead to heart diseases.

Weight loss and regular exercise can help reduce the risk of heart diseases as it tends to reduce high blood pressure and blood sugar levels. A healthy and balanced diet is another way to reduce weight and lower the risk of developing heart diseases.

High Body Mass Index is Linked to Strokes

Excessive fat in the body or the condition known as obesity causes hypertension. Stroke is mainly caused due to high blood pressure. Strokes can be prevented by reducing body weight which in turn reduces blood pressure level. Therefore it is quite pertinent to keep blood pressure level under control.

There are many ways to prevent obesity and control your weight. Healthy eating and regular exercise are the two simple ways to prevent obesity and other related health issues. Have a balanced and healthy diet of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and lean sources of protein such as poultry, fish, nuts and soy.

How Health Insurance Brokers Can Help You Find Affordable Medical Insurance

With all the choices available to everyone for health insurance, people definitely need help finding the right (and most affordable) policy for themselves and an insurance broker can certainly do this. For example, why pay high premiums for complete coverage, when you have no need for maternity benefits, or if you don’t have a lot of pre-existing conditions?

Insurance is basically a contract between the insured individual or group and an underwriting company or insurer, which provides for reimbursement in the case of loss; in this case, loss of money spent on health maintenance and accidents. In an economy where medical care is as costly as it is, one cannot afford to be without medical insurance.

Because the cost of premiums paid for such a policy can be expensive, especially for individual policy holders, the services of brokers can be invaluable. Brokers work independently and can sell policies from many insurance companies, or through numerous agencies. Most of these professionals work on commission, so they spend a lot of time looking for clients. Once they have set up a policy for a certain client, they follow through to help settle claim disputes between the insurance company, the insured, and the healthcare providers. This is especially true with non-typical claims such as those involving workmen’s compensation; when the insured is injured on the job.

Role of Yoga in Health and Fitness

Due to the modernization of lifestyle, we have lost the harmony of life due to which, we have got several diseases such as hypertension, obesity, coronary heart diseases, etc. To prevent the diseases we need to adopt the better lifestyle, which include a balanced diet with proper physical activity.

Yoga is highly considered in the modern science of living. Yoga was derived from word “Yog” which means “to join” or “together”. Yoga is a method of information that aims to balance the mind, spirit, and body. Yoga may increase individual physical flexibility, coordination, and strength, while the breathing practices and meditation may calm and focus the mind to develop greater awareness. So we should incorporate yoga into our daily routine for the healthy lifestyle as well as it also provides relief from mental stress.

Benefits of Yoga

#6. Yoga for Overall Wellness- Regular practitioners of yoga may experience the overall fitness of the body such as it improves the health status, provides mental strength, protect from the injuries, increases awareness, helps to maintain the body energy levels, detoxifies the body etc. Yoga also gets more oxygen to your cells, which affects the body functioning and it increases the circulation in the body

#5. Yoga For Stress Relief And Inner Peace- A daily practice of yoga may help to get rid of the stress that is caused by various reasons. Yoga postures such as pranayama and meditation are the best effective techniques to provide relief from stress. These techniques also provide calmness, balance the mind and body functioning and bring inner peace to the body.

#4. Yoga For Better Flexibility And Posture- Add yoga in your daily routine to make your body more strong and flexible. Daily practice of stretching makes your muscles strong. It also improves the flexibility of the body. Due to poor posture, we get back, neck, muscle, and joint problems. Everyday practice of yoga helps to improve your body posture when you walk, stand, sit and sleep. Yoga also provides relief from pain due to incorrect posture.

#3. Yoga for Immunity -Yoga asanas improve the body immune function, it maintains the blood pressure hence prevents the cardiovascular diseases. Yoga increases blood circulation and fat burning to lower cholesterol. It stimulates insulin production thus prevent diabetes. It also improves the gastrointestinal function thus eliminate toxic waste substances from the body. It helps you to stay healthy by balancing metabolism by controlling hunger and the weight.

#2. Yoga For Weight Loss- Nowadays obesity is the major issue which affects the majority of the population; yoga is a technique which helps you with weight loss. A regular practice of yoga helps you to burns more calories, it balances the hormonal level as that may encourage you to eat a lesser amount of food and you lose weight, and maintain a healthier lifestyle.

#1. Yoga Increases Concentration Power- Yoga increases the concentration in an individual. Regular practice of yoga may improve your concentration and can result in the better focus on life and profession.