Body Mass Index (BMI) is a mathematical formula that correlates highly with body fat. This height-weight calculation helps to determine whether you are at a healthy weight or have too much body fat.
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Studies have shown that a BMI of 25 or higher is associated with an increased health risk of conditions that include coronary heart disease, certain forms of cancer, stroke, high blood pressure and non insulin-dependent diabetes.
While BMI is a better indicator of body fatness and associated health risks than height-weight tables, BMI does not distinguish body fat from muscle. Nor does it take into account the distribution of body fat. Like height-weight charts, more heavily muscled people may be classified as overweight (BMI range 25-30) yet they may not necessarily be overweight.