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Is a BMI of 34 considered obese?

Is a BMI of 34 considered obese?

If you’ve got a BMI of 34, then your body mass index falls into the obese category (class 1 obesity). A 34 BMI score is just one BMI point away from the class 2 obesity classification, which is also known as moderate-risk obesity.

Additionally, a body mass index of 34 is approximately 4-6 BMI points higher than average for men and women, meaning that a BMI 34 individual will need to lose weight in order to improve their health.


What does a female with a 34 BMI look like?

A female who has a BMI of 34

Generally, a female with a BMI of 34 looks obese because anyone who has a 34 BMI will naturally be carrying a lot of excess body fat.

While some women definitely have large frames and a lot of muscle mass, which naturally increases their BMI, lean mass alone doesn’t result in a BMI of 34.

While BMI can’t directly measure body composition (muscle to fat ratio), really high body mass index scores are almost always accompanied by excess body fat.

While weight loss is possible for many individuals with a 34 BMI score, there’s no denying that such a high body weight is well into the obese BMI classification and, as such, needs to be reduced.

What does a male with a BMI of 34 look like?

A BMI 34 man running on the treadmill

Men with a BMI of 34 generally have more body fat than the average man, regardless of whether they’re muscular or not.

While you can certainly be heavy and lean, the human body can only get so muscular, meaning that males with high BMIs, such as thirty-four, usually have a lot of fat mass that needs shifting.

The good news is that, while BMI 34 men are certainly obese, they’re also not fat to the point where movement is a problem. As such, if you have a BMI of 34, you’re still in control of your health and can lose your excess weight naturally.

In this regard, you’ll want to exercise daily when possible, performing a mixture of weight training and aerobic activity so that you can build a strong body, increase your metabolism, and burn calories. 

On top of that, you’ll need to cut your calories (a 30-40% deficit may be recommended for obese individuals so that they can get down to a healthier body weight quickly).

BMI 34 classifications

the word BMI next to a measuring tape

While many people do have a BMI over 34, a lot of individuals have a body mass index of around 34 if they’re moderately obese.

34.1 BMI

If you have a BMI of 34.1, then you’re considered obese for a person of your height. A 34.1 BMI is approximately one BMI point away from class 2 (moderate risk) obesity.

34.2 BMI

Those with a 34.2 BMI are likely putting their health at risk by maintaining such a high body weight. Obesity is linked with diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and even certain types of cancers.

34.3 BMI

A BMI of 34.3 is well into the class 1 obesity category, meaning that people with a BMI of 34.3 need to lose weight but are still considered “low-risk” compared to people with morbid obesity.

34.4 BMI

A 34.4 BMI is very high for a man and a woman and usually means that a person has accumulated excess body fat through overeating, inactivity, or, more likely, a combination of both.

34.5 BMI

If you’ve got a 34.5 BMI, then you’re on the upper end of the class 1 obesity category and should seek to lose weight. As mentioned, you can achieve weight loss via calorie restriction and regular physical activity.

34.6 BMI

If you have a BMI of 34.6, then your body weight is too high for you to be healthy. You should talk to your doctor so that they can discuss the best weight loss strategies for someone of your size.

34.7 BMI

A 34.7 BMI is considered obese for both men and women. Specifically, a BMI of 34.7 is around 7-8 BMI points higher than average.

34.8 BMI

Those who have a 34.8 BMI are risking their long-term health by maintaining such a high body weight. If a person with a BMI of 34.8 gets any heavier, then losing weight will only become harder for them.

34.9 BMI

A 34.9 BMI is the final body mass index score in the class 1 obesity category, after which a person falls into the class 2 classification and is then considered to have a moderate risk for an obese person.

Conclusion: Is a BMI of 34 morbidly obese?

While a BMI of 34 isn’t considered morbidly obese, such a body mass is still well within the obese BMI category.

While you can be muscular with a 34 BMI score, the vast majority of people with a body mass index of 34 have a dangerous amount of body fat and need to lose weight.


  1. Seidell, J. C., & Flegal, K. M. (1997). Assessing obesity: classification and epidemiology. British medical bulletin53(2), 238–252.
  2. Khaodhiar, L., McCowen, K. C., & Blackburn, G. L. (1999). Obesity and its comorbid conditions. Clinical cornerstone2(3), 17–31.