How Do You Use a Height and Weight Chart?


Quick Answer

To use a height and weight chart, find your height in the left-hand column of the chart, according to Rush University Medical Center. Moving to the right in the same row, find your weight. The heading at the top of the chart identifies your weight class: normal, overweight or obese.

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Full Answer

A person's ideal weight is based on a combination of factors, including the amounts of bone, muscle and fat in the body, states Rush University Medical Center. Some height and weight charts also include BMI, or body mass index, results for each weight class. BMI indicates the percentage of body fat based on an adult's height and weight, states the National Institutes of Health. BMI for normal weight is between 18.5 and 24.9 percent. Overweight percentages range from 25 to 29.9, while obese is 30 percent or more.

For instance, a person who is 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs 136 pounds has a BMI of 22, which is within the normal range, according to NIH charts. However, if that same individual tips the scales at 155 pounds, the BMI is 25, which is overweight. If the weight chart does not show an exact weight, the value must be rounded up or down, whichever is closer. Individuals who are concerned about their weight or BMI should talk to their primary care physicians, Rush University Medical Center recommends.

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