High BMI & Life Insurance

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High BMI Insurance & Life Insurance

We understand that there are many reasons why someone could have a high BMI and we appreciate that this may be through no fault of their own. A person’s BMI may be higher due to a natural tendency to carry weight, a medical condition or even a result of being too muscular. My husband and I both had high BMIs and we can appreciate the feelings of judgement you get when you are very overweight.

It is also well-documented, by research, that flaws have been found in the accuracy of BMI because it doesn’t always consider key factors such as an individual’s muscle mass, bone density, overall body composition or even age.

So if you are found to have a high BMI, don’t worry, there could be many reasons for this but whatever it comes down to, finding the best life insurance for you is essential. And this is where we can help.

We have a team of expert advisors who understand about living with high BMI, high blood pressure or both and will take the time to understand your individual circumstances. Our whole of market access means we are able to find the best cover for you and your family.

We’d just need the following information to get started:

  • Your weight
  • Your height
  • Your dress size or waist circumference
  • Any known recent medical conditions

People living with a high BMI should not be deterred from applying for critical illness cover because unless your score is above 45, applications will generally be accepted by standard insurers.

There will be similar considerations as to those for life insurance and you should expect that a high BMI is likely to attract an increased premium for critical illness cover.

This is mainly down to the wider health considerations of carrying more weight which can place you at a higher risk of developing one of the critical illnesses listed on the policy. Because you are being protected against these, the increased premium offsets the added risk of you making a claim, regardless of the reason behind your high BMI.

But you will find that as your age increases, a higher BMI is considered more acceptable and therefore depending on your age, standard or lower premium ratings may be offered even with a high BMI.

And if your BMI is over 45, there are alternative options for us to look into by simply putting your application with specialist insurers that deal with similar instances.

Income protection cover for people with high BMI is considered to be slightly more strict than life insurance and critical illness cover, simply because of the potential wider health implications. It is perceived that excess weight can place additional strain on your body which can increase the chance of conditions such as heart attacks, strokes, certain cancers and gastric surgery.

The likelihood is that a high BMI will result in an increased income protection premium but it is still the case that your application, with a BMI score of up to 40, may be considered by a standard insurer – this will, however, be dependent upon your age and overall health too.

And if there is an instance where income protection is not an option then we can explore other routes. Accident and sickness plans can generally offer cover for a lower premium and we can help you to understand whether or not this is a viable option for you. It is important, however, to understand any small print on the plans you consider.

Please get in touch with us for a quotation.


Do you have a high BMI and plan on travelling abroad? It is worthwhile checking that your travel insurance covers you fully whilst you are abroad, at your current weight. We work alongside a specialist travel insurance broker who can help guide you to the right cover for you. Find out more here.

You can view a transcript for this CuraVision High BMI video here.

Please see our CuraVision Health BMI video here.

What is High BMI

BMI refers to your Body Mass Index and considers both your height and weight when determining whether your weight is considered to be healthy. It is calculated by dividing an adult’s weight in kilograms by their height in metres squared and according to guidelines, an ideal BMI is somewhere between 18.5 and 24.9.

Referring to a BMI score can be useful if you are attempting to monitor how healthy your weight is but it’s worth noting that it can sometimes be a little misleading. This is because it can’t, for example, account for a high BMI because someone is particularly muscular or determine if someone with a good BMI is in fact an unhealthy eater.

So whilst it can be a useful measurement, BMI shouldn’t be considered in isolation.

Also: Obesity, overweight

Linked with: High cholesterolhigh blood pressureunderactive thyroid gland (hypothyroidism)type 2 diabetes, heart disease, breast cancer, colon cancer, strokepolycystic ovary syndrome, Cushing’s Syndrome, sleep apnoeagoutheart attack 

There are a number of ways in which your BMI can affect your life insurance application so here’s just some of the things that are good to know:

  • Even though premiums can increase once a BMI of 30 is reached, there are some insurers who will consider standard terms up to a BMI of 36.
  • With a BMI of 33, the insurers you can approach may be restricted with premiums likely to increase incrementally for a score of 36 and above.
  • Life insurance for overweight or obese individuals can be accepted up to a BMI score of 45 on the standard market.
  • If your BMI is over 45, we have a range of specialist providers that we can approach for your life insurance; 66 is the highest BMI that we have arranged insurance for so far.

A high BMI does not mean that life insurance can’t be arranged. In fact, there are many insurers that will support this, each just has different underwriting guidelines which we will review for you against your individual circumstances.

There could be, however, additional considerations because they may ask questions such as your dress size or waist measurement – but with good reason! It allows them to determine how much weight you carry around your middle which is an area highlighted for additional health concerns such as type 2 diabetes.

But we understand that everyone is different and having a high BMI certainly doesn’t make life insurance any less important. We’ve found policies for many people with a high BMI whether this is because they do body building, have thyroid complications or simply as a result of their diet.

So rest assured, we can help you to find the most suitable life insurance for you, helping you to navigate the options along the way whilst considering the reason for your high BMI in the first place.

Some potential problems experienced by individuals who have a high BMI include:

  • Breathlessness
  • Excess weight
  • Gallstones
  • Gastric bypass surgery
  • Joint pain
  • Low self-esteem
  • Mobility issues
  • Snoring
  • Celevac tablets (Methylcelulose)
  • Exercise
  • Xenical (Orlistat)

Common Questions

Yes, certainly. As with any insurance, there are different underwriting limits from one insurer to the next and not everyone will be accepted for cover by the same provider. You may have been refused life insurance because your BMI is over 50, but we have arranged insurance for people with a BMI over 60 so it is possible – it’s just about knowing where to look.

It is normal for an insurer to apply an increased premium as a result of a high BMI but our expertise means we may be able to navigate around this by talking to the insurer on your behalf. Some insurers may be more accommodating once they are happy in the knowledge that your BMI is a result of fitness but you should bear in mind that if your BMI is particularly high, you may still be faced with an increased premium even after your application has been reviewed with the correct knowledge.

This will very much depend on your specific case but if you go through significant weight loss, and reduce your BMI as a result, then you could increase your chances of obtaining a cheaper life insurance policy. Losing weight is also a great opportunity for you to start leading a healthier lifestyle. But everyone is different and losing weight may not always reduce your BMI or attract lower premiums, so regardless of your situation, get in touch with us and we can explore the best options for you.


Client Reviews

Client Reviews

The Special Risks Bureau has been rated 5.0 out of 5 based on 346 reviews.

Review by Sarah and Mark on 19th February 2016

I was given a really good service, I honestly thought I would not get insured for my mortgage due to my health conditions. everyone I spoke to were really nice and kept me up to date it was nice to know I was dealing with real people. Would highly recommend A+++ – 5 High BMI Insurance & Life Insurance

You can read more of our reviews here.

High BMI Insurance & Life Insurance

Dr Kathryn Knowles Phd

This page was written by Dr Kathryn Knowles Phd, an award-winning insurance adviser. To read more about Kathryn please see her bio here

High BMI Insurance & Life Insurance

Client Reviews

High BMI Insurance & Life Insurance

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