BMI (Body Mass Index) classification for Asians

If you compare your BMI values with the World Health Organization (WHO) accepted world wide body mass index ranges then you may be getting the wrong classification.

The WHO BMI categories are based on the world wide average weights in relation to the height. e.g.

  • Underweight (under normal)
  • Average (normal)
  • Overweight (above normal)
  • Obese

However, in Asian countries it is significantly different from the average values of body mass index for the world.


There is a significant different of the BMI values. For example, for an Asian there is high risk for heart diseases even with the BMI of 28 where as the European will have that on BMI of 30.

The main reasons for the difference are: Additional fat content, and a difference of fat distribution on the body in Asians. Usually, Asians have shown increased fat accumulation even with the low BMI. Read article here

It is important to use the relevant scale for Asian to get proper identification of risk.

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