Low BMI & Weight Loss Surgery: Is It a Good Idea?

White analog bathroom scale with yellow measuring tape on a white background.

At Beltre Bariatrics, we understand that being overweight can be detrimental to your physical and mental health. Whether you’ve recently gained weight, cannot seem to lose weight through countless diet or exercise tactics, or are simply hoping to learn more about weight loss surgery, we have you covered.

It is important to know that weight loss surgery is not for everyone, but it can be an ideal option for those classified as overweight or obese. If you want to begin a journey to a healthier you, we can help. Dr. Beltre is is a board-certified surgeon and one of the only fellowship-trained bariatric surgeons in Central Florida.

Understanding what makes you an ideal candidate is essential to having safe and effective surgery and the best long-term recovery results when it comes to a sleeve gastrectomy or other weight loss surgery options.

Let’s dive into understanding precisely what BMI is and how it plays a role in weight loss surgery.

What is BMI, and how is it calculated?

Body mass index, or BMI, is a calculated measurement of a person’s body size. It utilizes height and weight to determine one’s precise percentage of body mass.

To calculate BMI, you take a person’s weight in pounds divided by their height in inches squared, multiplied by the conversion factor of 703. This fast calculation is an easy weight to determine whether a person is underweight, overweight, or within the parameters of the ideal weight for their height.

There are also various online BMI calculators that you can use to determine your BMI quickly and easily.

How do I know where my BMI falls?

There are standardized weight status categories that directly correlate to your BMI result. According to the CDC,  BMI categories are as follows:

BMIWeight Status
Below 18.5%Underweight
18.5% – 24.9%Healthy Weight
25.0% – 29.9%Overweight
30.0% and aboveObese


Those with a BMI of 35% and over who have been struggling to lose weight after countless efforts with exercise and diet changes are considered ideal candidates for weight loss surgery.

Is it a good idea to have weight loss surgery if my BMI is low?

No set BMI-based limit exists for weight loss surgery. Although those with a BMI between 30% and 35% see the most tolerated results from weight loss surgery, candidates can range in BMI percentage and still be qualified based on other health and lifestyle factors.

The safety and efficacy of weight loss surgery are well-tolerated for those with lower BMI and comparable to those with a higher BMI.

It is always best to discuss your personalized goals with our expert team to determine if you are the right candidate for weight loss surgery such as sleeve gastronomy or a gastric band.

Besides my BMI, how do I know if I am a candidate for a sleeve gastrectomy?

There are various factors to consider when determining if weight loss surgery is a good option for your health, including:

  • Your overall physical health
  • Your weight and nutrition history
  • Your medical history
  • Your age
  • Your level of physical activity and abilities
  • Your mental health

If you’re interested in learning more about the benefits of weight loss surgery, including including sleeve gastrectomy, we’d love to hear from you. Contact us today to schedule a consultation with our experienced weight loss team.

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