How to get life insurance if underweight

Weight is an important factor when it comes to getting your life insurance application approved. In fact, it could be just as challenging to obtain life insurance if underweight, as if you weigh a few extra pounds. We wanted to take the time and touch on this topic. In this guide, we would outline some of the reasons, steps, and tools to help you get the best available option.

Please feel free to reach out to us if you would like to take a look at your personal situation or answer any questions you might have.

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Your current weight is probably one of the first things companies will ask you when reviewing your application. They would also inquire if you had lost/gain more than 10lbs in the past 12 months. The key point is your weight affecting your health. There are countless studies linking our weight with overall health. Any changes in your health or mortality probability, make life insurance carriers feel at unease. They are looking for stability and predictability. We’ve dedicated an entire post on how your weight affects your life insurance

How to get the best rate for life insurance if underweight?

Life insurance if underweight infographic

Understand companies view underweight as a high risk.

This is very controversial and many of our clients believe that low BMI may lead to a better health rating on their life insurance policy. The reality, however, is that being underweight poses some health concerns.

According to, being underweight could lead to:

  • Osteoporosis
  • Malnutrition
  • Depression
  • Fertility problems and etc.

In fact, they go on to say:

Women who are underweight may also be more likely to die early than people of normal weight.

These statistics make insurance companies take being underweight serious. Unfortunately, we’ve had cases that were not approved for the sole reason of the applicant weighing less than the minimum requirement. She was otherwise in good health.

Shop the market to find the best option (or let us do this for you).

Life insurance companies use different weight charts. This means that one company may decline your application for life insurance if underweight, while others will approve your policy with a standard rating. Typically, carriers do not share their build charts, so it will be hard for consumers to do the research on their own without the help of an agent or a broker. 

Look for “gender-friendly” carriers.

life insurance rate gender

No, we are not saying that companies are gearing towards women. There are companies that have different weight charts for females vs. males. Typically, this means that carriers would consider your application for a few pounds less. Here is an example:

Companies that do not have different build charts based on gender:

For someone who is 5’6 the minimum weight, they will consider is 115lbs.

Companies that DO have different build charts based on gender:

The minimum weight for a female who is 5’6 is 103lbs and for a male of the same heights – 114lbs.

Life insurance important stop sign

However, if the carrier has a different gender chart, they could get approved even if the weight is as low as 103. The interesting part here is that literally, one pound would move you from standard to preferred rating.

Try to increase your BMI before the exam.

Here are some little things you can do to help get your policy approved.

  • Sleep well – being well-rested is crucial. We all know that lack of sleep has a negative impact on our health. Try to get as many zzz as possible. This will not only help you feel well-rested, but it could lead to better results from the exam
  • Eat healthy foods – this should always be our priority, but ensure that you are eating healthy the days leading up to the medical exam. Make sure you stay away from greasy, fried or spicy foods. It is also good to limit the amount of alcohol and cigarettes if you are a smoker. Little things like that could have a positive impact on the vitals and help you get a better health rating
  • Make sure you drink plenty of water – you want to make sure to be well hydrated.
  • Look into product/shakes that can help you gain a pound or two, just make sure you check with your doctor beforehand.
  • Try to schedule the exam the first thing in the morning – you were fasting through the night and your numbers may be more clear. Drink just water and have coffee after the exam.

In conclusion,

We wanted to advise you that there are options when looking into life insurance if underweight. The key point is to ensure that you are submitting your application with the right carrier for you. Companies have different weight charts and you want to ensure that you and your agent are focusing on the one that will give you the most favorable rating. Also, always be honest and upfront on your application. There are a few things that you can do to increase your chances of getting approved.

Please keep in mind that we are here to answer any questions you might have on the topic. You could reach us by filling out the quote form below, leave us a message or simply give us a call.

We hope you find this information helpful and are looking forward to having the opportunity to earn your trust and business.