But for Asians, the scale is different. Here is a handy Asian BMI Calculator. A pdf version is also available. After computing her BMI of 24.6, she said, “Oh, I’m within the normal range.”
“Actually, no,” I said. “You’re Asian and this table shows you are above the healthy range.” The cut-off was 22.9.
She pouted. “Does this mean I need to lose about 10 lbs to be in the healthy range?”
“If that will help ditch those pills you take, are you willing to? A healthy weight loss program will only take you 10 weeks to do that.”
Given the options, she agreed to try to come up with a plan based on her SMART goal.
What about you?
When was the last time you weighed yourself? Do you know your BMI, waist-to-hip ratio, and waistline? Why do you need to know these numbers? Here are some of the reasons:
1) Body Mass Index (BMI) tells you if you have a problem with obesity, which is a health risk for heart disease, diabetes type 2, and even COVID-19 complications. But BMI can overestimate body fat in athletes and others who have a muscular build and underestimate body fat in older persons and others who have lost muscle. So use the other two measurements below on top of your BMI.
2) Waist circumference
For women, having a waist circumference of more than 35 inches is a health risk, while for men, it’s a waist circumference of more than 40 inches. Again, if you're an Asian, the cut-offs are different. The desirable waist circumference for Asian women is equals or less than 80cm (31.5 in), whereas for Asian men, it's equals or less than 90cm (35.5 in) whereas for. Measure it above the hip bone and after exhaling. If your measurements are high, you may want to consider losing some of that excess fat around the waist that can lead to metabolic syndrome and increase your risk for heart disease, hypercholesterolemia, and diabetes type 2.
3) Waist-to-hip ratio Measure your waist circumference, then divide by your hip circumference. A healthy waist-to-hip ratio for men is less than 0.9, while for women, it’s less than 0.8. Your risks for heart disease and diabetes type 2 increase with a high waist-to-hip ratio. Do you know your other numbers? Your fasting blood sugar? Your cholesterol profile? Do you go for an annual check-up? What about your blood pressure? As we age, these numbers begin to change. Our risks for chronic diseases increase. We don’t want to be caught off guard with sudden chest pain or a stroke. Know your numbers.
A SMART goal is a measurable goal.
List down all your baseline numbers and mark the problematic ones.
Is it your weight?
Is it your waistline?
Is it your waist-to-hip ratio?
What about your fasting blood sugar, lipid profile, and blood pressure?
Which number do you want to put in the right place and what tools do you need to ensure you get there?
Buy a weighing scale, BP apparatus, glucose monitor, and tape measure.