The Body Mass Index (BMI) is a formula that uses your weight and height to calculate how much body fat you have. Your health care provider looks at the formula as a screening tool that helps her establish whether you are underweight, overweight, obese or at a normal weight. Before making a final diagnosis, she will examine your full clinical profile to determine whether you need to gain, lose or maintain your weight. If necessary, she'll give you information on how to improve your BMI.
Consume fewer calories if your BMI is above normal. The American Heart Association recommends that you eat only as many calories as you plan to burn on the same day. Fruits and vegetables are low in calories and high in vitamins and minerals, and they should make up the bulk of your daily diet.
Create the conditions for you to sleep well at night. The website Medical News Today reports that sleep deprivation causes your body to increase production of a hormone that stimulates appetite while reducing the production of another hormone that suppresses appetite. Thus, the less sleep you get, the hungrier you feel.
Eat more often if your BMI is below normal. Include grains and lean protein in your daily meals to build a healthy layer of body fat. Avoid sugary drinks and snacks, which may help you to put on weight but at your health's cost.
Lead an active lifestyle whether you need to raise or lower your BMI. Exercise helps you reach and maintain a healthy weight. According to Katherine Zeratsky, a licensed dietitian writing at MayoClinic.com, strength training is particularly helpful if you need to gain weight. To burn calories and lower your weight, pick an activity that requires you to move around, such as walking or dancing.