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Why Measuring Body Fat Is More Important Than Body Weight?

September 22nd, 2007 · 3 Comments ·
 
 

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Body fat. The words can make many, especially ladies, uneasy to discuss about. The reason is obvious. Contrary to what you might think, your body does not have body fat because it is trying to ruin your life. Rather, body fat is an energy-efficient fuel source.

Before you start any fat loss or weight training program, in addition to your body weight, you must take your body fat percentage reading. Knowing the weight alone does not distinguish whether the weight comes from fat or muscle. In order to assess your physical fitness level, you need to know your body fat.

After doing weight training program for few months, your weight may stay the same or even increase, but your body fat percentage should go lower. Why?

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Muscle tissue is more compact than fat and therefore you may weigh heavier. So, weight increase because of muscles gained is fine as long as you lose your body fat. Fat cannot become muscle, and muscle cannot become fat. They are two entirely different types of tissues. Muscle is more metabolically active than fat tissue. You will burn more calories with more muscles. By burning more calories from stored fat, you have less body fat.

So, it is important to know your body fat percentage. Body fat is often expressed as our “Body Fat Percentage”. For instance, for a 100 kg person with 20% body fat, 20 kg of that person is body fat, and the rest is bones, organs, and most importantly muscle.

The following table provides the rating systems. The readings are based on gender and age.

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You may have noticed several interesting facts about the tables:

  • Body fat percentage is expected to increase when we get older.
  • Within the same age group, compared with man, woman having more body fat is deemed to be healthy.

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What other facts not available from the tables yet remain very important which I want to highlight:

  • The higher your percentage of fat above average levels, the higher your health risk for weight-related illness such as heart disease, high blood pressure, gallstones, type 2 diabetes, osteoarthritis and certain cancers.
  • However, for women especially those super thin fashion models, having too little body fat may cause them suffering from amenorrhea (not having period).

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In a nutshell, body fat is an important element in successful weight control. So, don’t forget to measure your body fat. Want to find out how to measure your body fat, check out Will Muscle Become Fat, 4 Ways To Measure Body Fat and 4 Basic Facts About Body Fat

Some of the related body fat measurement gadgets available at Amazon:

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Category: Weight Loss


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3 responses so far ↓
  • aw // Sep 22, 2007 at 7:09 PM

    Yeah.. an article explaining how to conveniently measure body fat percentage would be great.

    And hopefully not just “pinch” the tummy, ahahaha

  • Elvina // Sep 24, 2007 at 9:55 AM

    I used to be on a crash diet few years ago and my body fat was only 16%… in which it is not healthy as I was suffering from amenorrhea… Although my body fat now is around 20-23%, but I feel much more healthier. I got more energy now to do more workouts. No more crash diet for me.. If I’ve took more than I should, I just make sure I go for cardio classes to burn it off… This way, I still get to eat what I want.. =)

  • Dieting for Specific Body Types // Mar 17, 2008 at 10:42 PM

    You gotta take into account your body type aswell, since differences in it will change the effect of your diet/workout schedule.

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