Use the BMI calculator to find out if you or your child's weight is healthy.
A body mass index (BMI) above the healthy weight range or too much fat around your waist can increase your risk of serious health problems, like heart disease, type 2 diabetes, stroke and certain cancers.
obese: 98th centile or above. If you're concerned about your child's weight, see your GP. Find out more in very overweight children
A child's BMI is expressed as a "centile" to show how their BMI compares to children who took part in national surveys. For example, a girl on the 75th centile is heavier than 75 out of 100 other girls her age.
Measuring waist size is not routinely advised for children because it doesn't take their height into account.
If you're concerned about your child's weight, contact your GP who may be able to refer you to your local healthy lifestyle programme for children, young people and families.
Limitations of the BMI
Your BMI can tell you if you're carrying too much weight but it can't tell if you're carrying too much fat. The BMI can't tell the difference between excess fat, muscle, or bone.
The adult BMI does not take into account age, gender or muscle mass. This means that:
very muscular adults and athletes may be classed "overweight" or "obese" even though their body fat is low
adults who lose muscle as they get older may fall in the "healthy weight" range even though they may be carrying excess fat
However, the BMI is a relatively straightforward and convenient method of assessing someone's weight.
Your can use your BMI result as a starting point for further discussion with your GP about your weight and your general health.