What Is the Average Weight for Men?

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With obesity on the rise around the world and in the United States, the average American man is overweight. While the average weight for men varies depending on height as well as geographic location, it's important to note that average weight and healthy weight are not the same.

Men (and women) who carry excess weight are at a greater risk for health problems including type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and arthritis. Find out how the average male weight by height compares to other averages over the years and what you can do to maintain a healthy weight.

What Is the Average Male Weight?

The average man in the U.S. over the age of 20 weighs 197.9 pounds. Note that weight tends to increase with age, with older men weighing about 200 pounds. However, after the age of 60, weight tends to decrease with age, with the average man weighing about 195 pounds.

What Is a Healthy Weight for Men?

Almost three out of every four men in the U.S. is considered to be either overweight or obese. However, the number on the scale can often be misleading. If you suspect you might be overweight, rather than comparing your weight with the average weight of other men your age, calculate your body mass index (BMI) instead.

BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight. According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), a BMI between 25 and 29.9 signifies overweight, and a BMI of 30 or more signifies obesity. This BMI calculator can provide you with an estimate.

Keep in mind that BMI is only one way to assess weight and doesn’t always account for total body composition. For instance, two men could weight exactly the same, but for one man, the number may represent an acceptable weight, while for the other, it may represent a risky one.

There are other ways to measure weight and health such as taking your hip-to-waist ratio and body fat percentage into account.

Looking at average weights can be deceptive. A man's height, the measurement of his middle, his genetics, and even his ethnicity all play a part in his overall health regardless of what he weighs.

The following table compares the average weight and BMI for American men in different age groups based on an average height of about 5 feet, 7 inches (175 centimeters). Note that the average BMI scores are above 25, which is considered overweight. In addition, an ideal weight for a man this height is about 145 pounds with a BMI of 22.

Average Weight for Adult Men in the U.S. (2015–2016)
Age group Average weight BMI
20–39 197 pounds 28.7
40–59 201 pounds  29.4
60 and older 195 pounds  29.2

If you need to lose weight, see your doctor. They can help you come up with a safe, manageable plan for weight loss.

How Has the Average Weight for Men Changed?

Measurements of BMI, weight, height, and head circumference have been collected in the U.S. since the mid-1950s. They've revealed, not surprisingly, that men have been getting taller—and heavier over the decades.

A report published in 1959 showed the average weight of male adults (those ages 20 and over) in the U.S. ranged from 151 pounds for a man 5 feet, 4 inches tall to 186 pounds for a 6-foot, 1-inch tall man. At those weights, the BMI of the shorter man would be about 26, and the BMI of the taller man would be 24.5. By today's standards, the shorter man would be considered overweight and the taller man would be on the higher side of what's considered a normal weight.

In terms of height and weight trends, the average height of a man in the U.S. increased by just 1 inch in the 42 years between 1960 and 2002. However, during that same time period, the average weight of an American male jumped from around 166 pounds to 191 pounds.

Average Male Weight in the U.S. (1960–2002)

The biggest increases were found in older men:

  • Men between the ages of 40 and 49 saw an average weight increase of 27 pounds.
  • Men between the ages of 50 and 59 logged an increase of 28 pounds.
  • Men 60 and older saw an increase of 33 pounds.

Tips for Managing Your Weight

Looking at the average weights for men can provide some general guidelines for what other people tend to weigh, but these numbers aren’t meant to be an indicator of what is a healthy weight for each individual.

The benefits of maintaining a healthy weight include a reduced risk for obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease, and other forms of chronic illness. Managing your weight can also help you to live longer. Try these simple strategies to reach a weight that is healthy for you.

  • Have realistic weight goals: Diets that promise quick weight loss rarely work in the long term. Most experts agree that a healthy and steady rate of weight loss is 1 to 2 pounds per week. Set realistic and sustainable weight loss goals for yourself to promote weight management.
  • Eat a healthy diet: Nutrition that includes a balanced mix of protein, carbohydrates, and healthy fats from nutrient-dense whole foods is key to managing your weight and maintaining overall health.
  • Stay active: While eating healthy is important, regular exercise that includes at least 150 minutes of heart-pumping physical activity and two sessions of strength training per week can promote weight loss and weight management. Regular exercise can also reduce the risk of obesity, heart disease, cancer, and other chronic health conditions.
  • Get enough rest: Research shows that not getting enough sleep can lead to hormonal imbalances, which can make it more difficult to lose weight and increase the risk of obesity. Getting enough sleep will also help to ensure you have enough energy to exercise. In addition, you'll be more likely to make healthy food choices when you're well-rested.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average weight for an 18-year-old man? 

The average weight for an 18-year-old male is 143.5 pounds, according to the National Health Examination Survey. That amount has gradually increased over the years, up from 128 pounds in the 1970s.

How do you calculate the average body weight for men?

The ideal average body weight for men is usually calculated in kilograms: 52 kg + 1.9 kg for each inch over 5 feet. Therefore, the average weight for a man who is 5 feet, 10 inches tall is 71 kilograms or 156.5 pounds. However, the ideal average body weight varies based on body mass index (BMI) and other factors such as age, muscle tone, athleticism, and body frame size.

A Word From Verywell

From a broad perspective, these types of statistics can offer up an idea of the general health of the male population. They can help you to see where you fall within the statistics, which can be a powerful incentive to lose weight or exercise more if it's clear you're on the higher end of the range for your height and age. Of course, you'll want to get your doctor's perspective as well.

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