Who doesn’t feel amazing when they can slide into a sexy red dress and turn heads at any age? One of the main reasons many women want to lose weight is to show off a stunning appearance.
However, there’s more to your ideal weight than loving the way you look. Staying within a certain weight range can also have a huge impact on your health right now and in the future.
Shedding extra pounds can reduce your risk of high blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes. Losing weight takes good care of your heart, liver and kidneys, and it can also keep you active and pain-free by reducing the stress on your joints. What is your ideal weight?
Find Your Body Mass Index
Trying to establish one “perfect” weight doesn’t work because everyone’s body is different. Things such as age, gender, bone structure and height all affect how much a healthy person weighs. That’s why finding your body mass index is helpful.
Instead of giving you an exact weight to aim for, BMI tells you a smart weight range for your body. For women, a BMI of 18.5 to 24.9 is ideal. A woman who is 5 feet 6 inches tall should optimally weigh between 118 and 148 pounds. The ideal weight for someone 6 feet tall is 140 to 177 pounds.
How To Calculate BMI
There are many online BMI calculators that can tell you your ratio in seconds. We like this one from Mayo Clinic because it takes into account age and gender.
All you need to know before getting started is your weight and your height. Enter the information into the boxes and click on the “Calculate” button. The number that appears is your BMI.
If you’re already in the ideal weight range, congratulations! If your BMI is closer to 26 or 30, it’s time to develop an effective weight loss plan right away.
Check Your Waist-to-Hip Ratio
The next important number to look at when it comes to your ideal weight is the amount of belly fat you have. Scientists have discovered that it’s especially important to get rid of stubborn fat around your midsection since it can increase your risk of diabetes and cardiovascular problems.
An easy way to check your body’s fat distribution around your tummy is to measure your waist-to-hip ratio, or WHR. Anything under 0.85 is ideal.
How To Measure WHR
To find your WHR, first measure your waist at its narrowest point. In women, this is usually right above the belly button. Next, measure your hips at their widest point. Finally, divide your waist size by your hip size.
For example, if your waist circumference is 25 inches and your hips measure 32 inches, you would divide 28 by 35. This makes your WHR 0.78, which is excellent. Generally speaking, if your hips are 36 inches or more, it’s a good idea to focus on weight-loss techniques that specifically target stubborn tummy fat.
Set Weight Loss Goals
Over two-thirds of Americans (71.6%) are overweight, so don’t feel bad if your BMI and WHR measurements aren’t exactly what you hoped to see. Even if you feel like there’s a long way to go for reaching your target weight, your body gets significant benefits from smaller weight loss goals, too.
Don’t follow fad diets that promise you can drop 50 pounds in two weeks (this isn’t a healthy or reliable way to keep weight off long term). Instead, set smaller steps on the road to your optimal weight. Losing 5 or 6 pounds can have a great effect on your metabolism, making it easier for you to keep losing weight.
Never give up! If you need help achieving your ideal weight, nutrition specialists can be an excellent source of guidance. They can assist in developing menu and exercise changes that really work. Weight loss that makes you feel happy is easier to maintain.