body mass index


Definition of body mass index

: a measure of body fat that is the ratio of the weight of the body in kilograms to the square of its height in meters

Examples of body mass index in a Sentence

A person with a body mass index of more than 30 is considered to be obese.
Recent Examples on the Web Under current state requirements, students in grades five, seven and nine are required to take a physical fitness test, which includes the one-mile run, curl-ups, push-ups and a measure of body mass index. Alicia Lee, CNN, "California may stop school fitness tests over fears they lead to bullying and body-shaming," 6 Feb. 2020 Through CVS’ Project Health program, a few pharmacies are offering free health screenings for body mass index, blood pressure, glucose, total cholesterol and consultations. Rachel K. Hindery,, "Free health screenings offered in western suburbs," 8 Nov. 2019 Testing will be available for those with underlying conditions such as diabetes and those with a body mass index (BMI) over 30. Matthew Vantryon, Indianapolis Star, "Coronavirus in Indiana: What we learned Monday from the governor's news conference," 6 Apr. 2020 And the health benefits were seen no matter a participant's body mass index, blood pressure or cholesterol. Marissa Cruz Lemar,, "Never exercised? It’s not too late to take steps toward an active life.," 21 Oct. 2019 But after controlling for gender, age, smoking, body mass index, diet and multiple other factors, only step counts were linked to mortality risk. Gretchen Reynolds, New York Times, "Stuck Inside? Keep Walking," 1 Apr. 2020 Similarly, nutritional labels have had little effect on consumers’ food intake and body mass index. Dana Goldman, The Conversation, "Obesity, second to smoking as the most preventable cause of US deaths, needs new approaches," 27 Jan. 2020 The study found that belly fat was associated with heart attacks and stroke independent of other risk factors like smoking, diabetes, hypertension, body mass index and prevention treatments. Katie Hunt, CNN, "Your waist size may be more important than weight for multiple heart attack risk," 20 Jan. 2020 In their analysis, the researchers ruled out factors that could have explained the association, including estrogen levels, education, body mass index (BMI), race, smoking habits and when a woman first started her period. Katie Hunt, CNN, "Less sex linked to an earlier menopause, study finds," 14 Jan. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'body mass index.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of body mass index

1983, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about body mass index

Time Traveler for body mass index

Time Traveler

The first known use of body mass index was in 1983

See more words from the same year

Statistics for body mass index

Last Updated

18 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Body mass index.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 May. 2020.

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for body mass index

body mass index


English Language Learners Definition of body mass index

: a measurement that shows the amount of fat in your body and that is based on your weight and height

body mass index


Medical Definition of body mass index

: a measure of body fat that is the ratio of the weight of the body in kilograms to the square of its height in meters a body mass index in adults of 25 to 29.9 is considered an indication of overweight, and 30 or more an indication of obesity abbreviation BMI

called also Quetelet index

More from Merriam-Webster on body mass index

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with body mass index Encyclopedia article about body mass index

Comments on body mass index

What made you want to look up body mass index? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


See Definitions and Examples »

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Obscure Shapes

  • a pile of three dimensional shapes in green
  • Something that is ooid is shaped like:
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

Bee Cubed

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!