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How Important is Your Body Fat Percentage?

Ok what is your body fat percentage?

William AgnewThe first thing I want you to know is that even if you think your overweight, your body fat % may be just fine.

Also, It is important not to confuse BMI with body fat. BMI (body mass index) numbers are NOT percentages of body fat.

The percentage of body fat varies with each person. Two individuals can have the same height and weight, but very different percentages of body fat?

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What Is Body Fat %

Body fat percentage is the percentage of our weight which is made up of fat. The part of our body that isn’t fat is referred to as our “lean body mass. It's important to have a certain amount of body fat. Our bodies need fat for insulation, energy storage, and other functions.

How Do I Measure My Body Fat % ?

Body FatThere are a few way to measure your body fat %. The most practical and probably the most accurate method is what is know as the skinfold measurement.

Take skinfold measurements in millimeters. See below for areas to measure

Triceps (directly on back of the arm)

Hip (one inch above hip bone)

Stomach (side of the belly button)

Thigh (right on the front of the middle thigh)

Calculate the sum of your measurements.

Fat Weight = Body fat % X Scale weight

Lean Body Mass = scale weight - Fat weight

The Formula for calculating the Body Fat % is

How Much Body Fat Should a Person Have?

Women naturally are going to have and need more body fat than men. A women's breasts are almost all fat, and women have more fat around their hips. If a woman’s body fat drops too low this could be bad for health and her body will start showing signs of this problem such as menstruation.

On the other hand, men have a greater amount of muscle. As we age our muscles tend to shrink. This is partially due to the decline in testosterone and other hormones.

It is important however not to confuse BMI with body fat. These are different. BMI (body mass index) numbers are NOT percentages of body fat.

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