Body fat is an incredibly difficult subject – it’s hard to calculate, hard to measure, and most people also value the wrong way in their body fat. And yet it is a relatively important issue because you let fat know you if you should lose weight or not.
The normal way to make a statement about here is with the BMI method, also known as the body mass index. This method indicates in which category you fall – underweight, normal weight or overweight – is calculated by your height and weight. However, people with a lot of muscle weigh more heavily and often fall into the category of overweight while they are actually very healthy and fit in reality.
Your body fat percentage is the answer. And that’s exactly what we’re going to talk about in this article. Not only do I measure seven popular options by taking with you your body fat percentage, I will give you tips to effectively reduce your body fat.
What does fat mean?
Simply put, the fat gives the proportion of fat in the body compared with the rest – and the rest is of course you organs, muscles, bones, tendons, water and so on. Men and women have different amounts of fat in their body and this is also reflected in a different fat content. These differences are mainly due to the muscle mass. Overall, men have a greater amount of muscle in their body, so that the total fat content is lower.
Let me give you an example.
A super-muscular body of a male bodybuilder trying to burn fat for his upcoming competition, maybe 3-4% fat in his body. A female bodybuilder in the same situation has a fat content of 8-9%. A male athlete in a top condition may have a fat content of 10% and a female oncoming vehicle is within 18 to 20%. On the other hand, there is an overweight man with a fat percentage of 30%, a whole lot is different to me from a woman with a fat percentage of 30%.
Which fat is healthy?
Although no precise statement about what ‘fat is perfect’, and moreover, can be found here in a reasonable range, there are guidelines that found to be healthy.
Everyone called essential fat, which means that when someone gets this fat, organs are likely to fail, and he / she died. For women, the proportion is 10-12%.
Female athletes have a fat content between 14 and 20 percent, fit women between 21 and 25 percent and an acceptable range occupies 25 to 31 percent. If you like a fat woman of 31% or more, you fall into the overweight category.
As we’ve already seen, this range of men’s looks is quite different. For example, men can get, for example, no less than a fat content of 2-4%.
Male athletes have a fat content of between 6 and 13 percent, while those in good shape account for 14 to 17 percent. An acceptable body fat percentage in men between 18 and 25 percent. While a fat percentage of more than 25% for men means that you are overweight.
Everyone is well aware of what body fat is essential for survival – protects fat from your internal organs, provides the necessary energy in times of danger, and much more.
‘Essential Fat‘ is the minimum amount of fat you need to survive – less than this amount would likely cause organ failure, but even approaching this minimum amount can be dangerous. Therefore, bodybuilders only reduce their body fat content to the minimum when turned on a competition – for the rest of the year, they keep a higher level of fat so they can stay healthy and function effectively.
If you want a six-pack man or a woman to look more muscular, then you should look at the above fat athletes. For men, this is between 6 and 13 percent for women between 14 and 20 %.
However, if you only want to look healthy, you probably want to get in the ‘fit’ area. Once you get into the upper latitudes of “acceptable”, it is probably better to go to do something and try to reduce fat.
So, before you can do anything to change your body fat percentage, you must first determine your goal.
- If you want to shoot like movie stars during a movie, then you should aim for a body fat percentage of 6-8% or 13-15%. Please note that your condition and performance in the gym in this case are likely to worsen. In fact, their performance is generally much better when you fall into the “fit” area. It is up to you whether you find it useful. Also, keeping these sentences hard to obtain in the long run. Have you ever seen a movie star while he / she was not a movie to run?
- If you’re interested in this coveted six-pack, lower your body fat percentage than the 8-11% for men and 15-17% for women.
- Are you an athlete and optimal athletic performance for you the priority, then aim for a body fat percentage of about 15% or 20%. Women can often do a lot better with a fat content of around 20%.
- If you just want to look good and want to feel comfortable in your body, it is less than 18% in men and between 20-23% of ideal. This is the perfect area if you want to hear regularly, Hey, what are you looking for ?! ‘
Women should be aware that menstruation can stop with fat levels below 15%. This can also have a negative impact on fertility. So better to be safe than sad and keep your body fat percentage above 20%.
Note: your body fat percentage is simply the amount of body fat you have; it has nothing to do with the amount of lean muscle you have, which means that two people with the same amount of fat can look very different.
Calculate Your Body Fat Percentage
While there are numerous ways to measure body fat percentage and calculation, not all methods are so accurate or even easily performed by anyone.
There are seven main methods you can use and I have all 7 you put in a row below :
- Looking in the mirror – This is probably my favorite method, although it requires a trained eye and is certainly not very accurate. A list of clear images to compare exactly one photo of yourself, you can estimate something, what your body fat percentage. In fact, however, this is only the first step to be included, because it is clear that you will not include a correct answer here, but even comparing it with the photos you can at least determine all the starting point.
- Skinfold measurement with a saddle – A saddle can be very cheap in the store or in a gym. Pull the fat out of your muscles, squeeze it between the saddle, take measurements, and check this chart to find out what your body fat percentage is. Some people recommend measuring only one location, while others recommend measuring in different locations. Whatever you decide, it is good to remember that a skin fold measurement underestimate body fat in most cases. Often this is only one or two percent, but keep it in mind. It is not the most accurate method, but there is a pretty good estimate given in this ways to measure your body fat percentage is so easy and cheap.
- To take the measurement method – by taking measurements with a tape measure and then using an online calculator, you can calculate your body fat percentage. This method is not incredibly accurate body fat and you can easily overestimate it again. Of course, this is not surprising since you have limited information here. But again, that this method is simple and free, and almost anyone can work from home as a good estimate of the fat.
- Scales with Body Fat Analysis – When you step on such a scale, an electrical current is sent through your body, and uses a biometric impedance analysis “I rarely use this method because this is one of the least accurate. Ways to calculate your body fat percentage. The electric current is being sent through your body and if you keep a lot of moisture, this can drastically change the analysis. Especially for many women – and especially around menstruation – this can be detrimental. For women, therefore, I would actually discourage this method while it would be a great way for men to follow a downward trend in fat.
- Plethysmography- This method calculates your body fat percentage air with your body to measure mass, volume and density. The ways to measure your body fat is also quite correct, but unfortunately also very expensive and usually only in big cities. However, if you are interested in a very accurate way to measure your body fat percentage, you can find several websites online.
- Hydrostatic Weighing – This method is also known as extrusion and although this method is very accurate, it is expensive and it takes a lot of time. Now centers in the Netherlands are beginning to grow, to offer this opportunity. Personally, I would choose, but not sure, because of the difficulties and costs associated with it.
- DEXA – This is considered the most accurate method because it is actually a full dual x-ray of your body composition and therefore you can give accurate values. Like, if you have broken something, you are lying on a table while it is an x-ray of the entire body. Although this is the most accurate method, it is also the most expensive.
What is the best ways to measure body fat percentage?
Now that you know the seven most important ways to calculate your body fat, you may wonder what the best way is. But of course that is up.
Because if you are overweight and you want to lose weight and reduce body fat, then it is probably not a good idea to decide on the most expensive methods just because you often repeat this when you lower your body fat percentage. So, if you have a lot of money on it, this is not really cost effective.
As a start, I would suggest that you choose a method that is easy to perform from home. Personally I would choose in this case, folded the measurement of skin measurement. Although these methods are not very accurate, they can give you a good indication of whether you are on the right track. This would ideally do in conjunction with the trend of body weight, that is, simply on the scales to see if you have lost weight.
But if you are already close to your goal, and you will primarily optimize the composition of your body by reducing your body fat and increasing your muscle mass, then it is a better idea to opt for a more accurate method because of a few percent difference considerable part when you are almost at your destination. Moreover, it is not necessary to do such a measurement more than once or twice.
In short, it all depends on your goal, and you also have to look at what your budget and opportunities are.
5 tips to reduce your body fat
If you have followed this article to the end, you have probably already measured your body fat percentage, and you have determined your exact purpose. Now it’s time to start working in that direction.
If you are overweight, your diet will become more active and you will already be taking a big step in the right direction. However, if you are already near your target and are now primarily trying to lower your body fat then these tips are for you. They can give you the little boost to correct, help you to reduce your body fat with the last few percent.
Remember that it can take some time to reach your goal. Because if you are already on a healthy weight, your body does not like losing its last fat stores. To do this you often have to work extra hard to do your best.
Eating Less Calories – Although I believe that not all calories lose weight, there’s no way to get it – especially when you’re so close to your goal: Burning Fat You need to burn more calories than you consume , A good guideline is 20% and 30% eat fewer calories than you need to maintain your weight.
To eat normally about 2000 calories to maintain your weight, it is important that you do not get less than 1400 kcal of your body fat down consuming. For best performance, 1600 kcal is probably better. If you do not have strength training and in addition eat too many carbohydrates, you will probably lose muscle along with fat. This is not optimal, so it is advisable to reduce your carbohydrate consumption.
Eat less than 100 grams of carbohydrates a day – If you deprive your body of carbohydrates, your body does not have free access to its favorite source of energy: sugar. So it is, you are body to fat to quickly restore yourself, with energy.
Strength – When you train with heavy objects, you become stronger and you hold the muscle you already have. In addition, you also give your metabolism a boost as you burn extra calories after exercise. This so-called “afterburning” is the highest in force.
Have Interval Training – Interval training is shorter but more intense than other forms of sport. By giving your body extra taxation for a short time, give it a little push in the right direction and burn faster to burn more fat. Two or three times 20 min. Interval training a week is ideal in combination with other workouts.
Train on an empty stomach – Bodybuilders and athletes who want to drastically reduce their body fat percentage often exercise as it is in the morning before breakfast. Your body is indeed fasted for a long time and no food left to rely on. This means that it relies on fat as an energy source. And training in the morning, you consume more energy and burn fat so quickly.
After all …
As you can see, there are no magic ways to lower your body fat percentage. It may well be that you have fallen so far, and now you are close to your destination, you are suddenly silent.
How frustrating that is, it’s good to realize that this is just a survival mechanism of your body. After all, you are already a lot of weight and that is why you want to keep your hand on the little fat that will be left for times of need.
Therefore, it is important to realize that you are getting down fat compared to simply losing weight will cost more and more effort. In addition, you should not that you float through what you see on TV. Just to make sure you feel comfortable in your body, your health is indeed the most important.
Remember, there are several bodybuilders who have died in the past because they went too far in the search for the “perfect” body, which is the lowest percentage of fat.
Be always realistic and always listen to your own body.