Body Mass Index

Body mass index is an anthropometric measure that estimates nutritional condition in adults and children on the basis of weight and height. BMI may estimate total body fat and can point to body shape. Body mass index was suggested by Adolphe Quetelet in 1870.
Body mass index serves as a standard measure for registering obesity statistics. BMI is a good tool for tracking trends among people belonging to various categories such as underweight or overweight. Body mass index is particularly important for understanding growth and development of children. On the other hand, BMI poorly detects such conditions as various proportions of fat, muscular mass, bones, cartilage, and water volumes. BMI takes into account the height contribution to weight.
Increased morbidity and mortality are linked to high or low BMI. Body mass index can be used to analyze anorexia and bulimia. It is more difficult to diagnose overweight and obesity among children because their body mass index changes with age and depends on gender. It is useful to note that health insurers apply high body mass index as a cut-off value for increasing insurance rates or refusing insurance to high risk patients.
Body mass index can be calculated by BMI formula.