Reaching the perfect weight is something many people strive for, but “perfection” is deceptive. “Healthy” is a range, not a number. Therefore, it’s best to leave the number obsession behind and focus on achieving a body weight in the range best suited for your own personal characteristics such as your height, weight, age, and gender.
Are you dealing with the stress of achieving perfection? It’s very easy to get sucked into a downward spiral of striving to be perfect, but don’t get stuck in that rut. Doing so will only result in slowing the process of becoming healthier by sabotaging your efforts and putting a strain on your mental health as well. So let’s change that mentality of perfection and turn it into a mentality of health and wellness. Commit to focusing on wellness and feeling good, not numbers.
Body Mass Index
Body Mass Index, or BMI, is the most widely used method of determining a healthy weight range. The body mass index can be easily calculated using your height and weight on an online calculator. Finding your ideal weight range using a BMI calculator is helpful, but does have its limitations. BMI, while reliable and widely used, does not account for age, gender, ethnicity, or body composition- all factors that are important in determining a healthy weight range.
BMI charts and calculators don’t account for all of the variables that affect a person’s weight. Factors such as the proportion and distribution of fat, the size of a person’s frame, or their proportion of muscle, to name a few. For example, athletes and bodybuilders will have a denser muscle composition, and older bodies tend to store more fat than younger bodies.
Finding the Ideal Body Weight
There are many ways to find the ideal body weight for yourself. The BMI is one way, as mentioned earlier, if you fit into the ranges on the BMI chart. If not, because you’re taller or shorter than the set average or any other factor listed above, there are other ways to calculate your healthy weight instead of your BMI weight.
The waist-to-hip ratio is another popular method to determine if you are at a healthy weight and size. This method involves comparing your waist size with your hip size using a measuring tape. Studies have shown that people with a larger midsection than that of their hips are at greater risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes. The higher the waist measurement in comparison to the hip measurement, the higher the risk. A similar method to determine a healthy weight is the waist-to-height ratio. Again, this involves measuring around the waist, but now it will be compared to your height. If your waist measurement is more than half of your height you may be at a higher risk for health issues such as high blood pressure and heart disease.
There is not one ideal or perfect weight. Worry less about the numbers on the scale and more about your health and wellness. Eating right and exercising regularly can go a long way to helping you keep a healthy weight. Focus on health, not on perfection.