Ideal Weight Calculator

Ideal Weight Calculator

The term “ideal body weight” or IBW, is something you’ve probably heard a lot, especially with all the images and standards set by the media. But did you know that it wasn’t created to set beauty standards? Its roots are actually in medicine, where it was used to calculate medication dosages. Even sports use it for classification purposes. It’s key to remember though, that IBW doesn’t consider factors like muscle and fat percentages. So, even super fit athletes might be tagged as overweight if we just go by their IBW.

It’s crucial not to view IBW as the ultimate health goal or an ideal weight everyone should aim for. Prioritizing a specific IBW over healthy habits like regular workouts, balanced diet, and ample sleep is not the right way to go. These lifestyle choices are what truly matter for your overall well-being.

There are several elements that play into figuring out one’s ideal weight:

Age: As we grow older, our bodies change. While growth stops after adolescence, adults usually see a decline in lean muscle mass and a rise in body fat.

Gender: Men and women are biologically different, and this impacts the ideal weight. For example, women typically have more body fat and less bone density than men.

Height: Naturally, taller folks have more muscle mass and body fat, which means they weigh more.

Body Frame: Your body frame size, whether it’s small, medium, or large, can greatly influence measurements like IBW and BMI. So, a person with a larger frame will weigh more than someone with a smaller frame, even if they’re the same height.

How to calculate ideal weight?

Calculating ideal weight requires considering various factors like gender, age, and height. However, it’s important to understand that “ideal” weight is a reference point and does not capture individual health or fitness. Below is a simplified method to calculate it:

  • Determine Gender: Choose between male and female.
  • Choose Age Group: Pick the range that most closely fits the person’s age:
  • Select Height: Enter the person’s height in feet and inches (or in metric units if preferred).
  • Calculate: After entering the required information, the calculator will use a standard formula to estimate the ideal weight range for the given gender, age group, and height.

Remember, ideal weight is just one aspect of health. Factors such as muscle mass, body composition, and lifestyle habits like diet and exercise play crucial roles in determining overall well-being.

What are the ideal weight formulas?

Various formulas were developed to determine the Ideal Body Weight (IBW), primarily for dosing medications. Each formula follows a similar structure, adding a set weight per inch over 5 feet to a base weight for that height. For example, for a 5’10” male using the Devine formula, one would add (2.3 × 10) kg to 50 kg, resulting in an estimated IBW of 73 kg or ~161 lbs.

These formulas vary due to the different research and findings of the scientists behind their creation. Among them, the Devine formula is the most commonly used for IBW measurement.

  1. J. Hamwi Formula (1964): Developed for medicinal dosages. It follows:

  – Male: 48.0 kg + 2.7 kg per inch over 5 feet
  – Female: 45.5 kg + 2.2 kg per inch over 5 feet

  1. J. Devine Formula (1974): Initially intended for medicinal dosages based on weight and height, but over time, it became a universal measure of IBW. It follows:

  – Male: 50.0 kg + 2.3 kg per inch over 5 feet
  – Female: 45.5 kg + 2.3 kg per inch over 5 feet

  1. D. Robinson Formula (1983): A modification of the Devine Formula, following:

 – Male: 52 kg + 1.9 kg per inch over 5 feet
– Female: 49 kg + 1.7 kg per inch over 5 feet

  1. R. Miller Formula (1983):Another modification of the Devine Formula, following:
    – Male: 56.2 kg + 1.41 kg per inch over 5 feet
    – Female: 53.1 kg + 1.36 kg per inch over 5 feet

These formulas, though widely used, are just reference points and do not consider body composition or overall health.

What are the uses of Ideal Body Weight (IBW) Estimations

Originally designed for prescribing medication dosages, ideal weight formulas have broader applications. They serve as references for structuring diets and determining nutritional intake (calories per day). While some mistakenly perceive them as beauty standards, they primarily offer a convenient, quick estimate of body weight for nutritional and body composition evaluations.


Pai M.P., Paloucek F.P. (2000) “The origin of the “Ideal” body weight equations” Annals of Pharmacology 34:1066-69


Peterson C.M., Thomas D.M., Blackburn G.L., Heymsfield S.B. (2016) “Universal equation for estimating ideal body weight and body weight at any BMI” The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 103(5):1197-1203

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