Based on height, what is the ideal weight for men and women?

For some people, knowing their ideal weight for height can be a daunting task. Fortunately, there are some methods that make this calculation easy.

Last update: 05 February, 2022

Ideal body weight is one of the most popular health indicators. Height and weight are usually combined to assess the nutritional status of people, according to age. Are you interested in knowing what the ideal weight is according to height in men and women? Coming up next, we tell you.

It is common for people to be afraid or anxious when facing the scale. However, this measurement is essential to understand the metabolic condition, as well as to avoid long-term complications.

Currently, studies affirm that healthy body weight is nothing more than a range that is related to good health statistics and a lower rate of pathologies. The calculation of the ideal weight according to height takes into account the weight in kilograms and the height in meters, as well as the age and sex of the person.

How to calculate the ideal weight according to height in men and women?

The body mass index (BMI) or Quetelet index is the most used method to calculate the ideal weight of a person according to height. This anthropometric indicator associates mass and height to estimate your body build.

In this way, the BMI allows identifying and classifying the nutritional status. In addition, from this measurement it is possible to estimate the ideal weight that someone should maintain or reach.

Nevertheless, it does not take into account the volume of muscle, fat or water, being only a reference of the ideal weight according to height. Therefore, people who have greater muscle mass or have fluid retention may obtain inaccurate estimates.

BMI is calculated by dividing weight in kilograms by height in meters squared:

BMI = kg/m²

In this sense, if someone weighs 70 kilograms and is 1.70 meters tall, the calculation would be made as follows: 70/1.7². In this way, the BMI would be 24.2. On the other hand, it is possible to locate some calculators on-line that make work easier. The Spanish Obesity Society offers this tool on its website.

There are tables that allow you to calculate your BMI and locate your ideal weight according to height. They depend on the region and are based on previous estimates obtained from other people’s results.

Calculations for BMI are simple, but are now made easier by apps and calculators on-line.

Results analysis

The results of the BMI calculation are very useful to identify if a person is overweight or malnourished. The World Health Organization (WHO) allows people to be classified according to their BMI into the following categories:

  • Low weight or underweight: BMI less than 18.5.
  • Normal weight: BMI between 18.5 and 24.9.
  • Overweight: BMI greater than or equal to 25.0.
  • Obesity: BMI greater than or equal to 30.0.

Similarly, obesity can be mild, moderate, or morbid, depending on whether the BMI rises above 30. This value is not always constant, and its relevance depends on the actual proportions of fat tissue and muscle mass. So it is advisable to go to a nutrition specialist.

Ideal weight in children

In young children, the ideal weight is determined to a greater extent by age and gender. As a general rule, newborns reach a weight between 3.2 and 4.8 kilograms in the first month; at 5 months they double their weight and in the first year they triple it. At 2 years it quadruples.

In this sense, if a baby in the first month weighs 3.3 kilograms, it is estimated that at 5 months he weighs 6.6 kilograms, at one year 9.9 kilograms and at 2 years 13.2 kilograms. Similarly, there are tables and growth curves in which the child’s weight, height and BMI are placed to classify their nutritional status.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers a calculator on-line to determine the BMI range in children and adolescents. Take into account age, gender, height and weight.

For the pediatric age, the calculation is less precise with the BMI. That is why special tables are used in queries.

Recommendations to achieve a healthy body weight

The recommendations to achieve the ideal weight according to height vary according to the nutritional status of the person. Studies estimate a global prevalence of overweight and obesity of 39% and 13%, respectively. In this sense, we can follow the following advice if the BMI is above what is healthy:

  • start a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and fiber.
  • Reduce consumption of ultra-processed foods high in fat and sugar.
  • Do light to moderate physical activity, 30 minutes a day and 3 times a week.
  • Avoid alcoholic beverages and tobacco.

In addition, in cases of morbid obesity, the doctor may recommend bariatric surgery, thus promoting weight loss.

On the other hand, the following recommendations can be followed when the BMI is below the ideal weight:

  • Avoid eating fast food and empty calorie products.
  • Increase consumption of protein-rich foods, such as eggs, chicken, meat and fish.
  • plan a diet of healthy and safe weight gain.
  • perform exercises muscle strengthening.

The ideal weight paves the way to a better quality of life

Ideal body weight for height is an anthropometric variable widely used by professionals to assess metabolic and nutritional status. In adults, BMI is the most common way to estimate the needs to reach a healthy state. If you have any concerns, do not hesitate to consult your trusted doctor.

You might be interested…