Statistics Explained

Glossary:Body mass index (BMI)

The body mass index, abbreviated as BMI, is a measure of a person’s weight relative to height that correlates fairly well with body fat. The BMI is accepted as the most useful indicator of obesity in adults when only weight and height data are available.

BMI is calculated by dividing body weight (in kilograms) by height (in metres) squared.

The following subdivisions are used to categorise the BMI into five categories:

Note that the BMI is not calculated for children.

Related concepts

Statistical data