Our Manasa Ayurveda consultations are undertaken by registered healthcare professionals and as well as using traditional Ayurvedic methods also include professional physical health checks. One of these checks is on your weight and height.
Why does this matter?
Being a healthy weight helps to control our blood pressure and blood glucose (sugar) levels, and helps reduce the risk of heart disease and diabetes. It is not unusual for people to gain weight when first starting medicines for mental health problems.
To check if you are a healthy weight for your height, your body mass index (BMI) can be calculated. This is an estimate of body fat. The higher your BMI is, the higher your risk for certain diseases such as heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes.
Your Manasa Ayurveda therapist will measure your weight (in kilograms) and height (in metres).
Your BMI is worked out by dividing your weight by your height
Then dividing the number you get from this by your height again to give you a BMI score
Your therapist will tell you the results and record it on a chart
What do the results mean?
Your BMI score gives you an idea if you need to take action about your weight.
There are slightly different guideline depending on your ethnic group. Most of the research about the health effects of BMI scores has been carried out with people from an Asian background. The World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Department of Health recommend that people from an Asian background need to take action when their BMI score is slightly lower than people from a white European background.
Underweight (you may need to put on weight):
Asian population: Below 18.5
White European population: Below 18.5
Normal (this is generally ideal, you should aim to stay this way):
Asian population: 18.5-23
White European population: 18.5-24.9
Overweight (it may be a good idea to try to stop further weight gain or lose some weight):
Asian population: 23-27
White European population: 25.0-29.9
Obese (losing weight will improve your health):
Asian population: 27.5 and above
White European population: 30.0 and above
BMI and Ayurvedic body type
Rotti et al. (2014) completed a study which found that people with certain Ayurvedic body types (prakruti) are naturally more likely to have a higher or lower BMI. People with a lower BMI (less than 20) are most likely to have a vāta body type, and people with a higher BMI (greater than 25), are most likely to have a kapha body type. So different people may naturally have a higher or lower BMI.