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What you should know about body fat?

What is body fat?

Fat is often associated with negative perspectives, but the truth is we could die if we don’t have any fats in our body.

Body fat is essential to protect one’s health and to provide energy for performing various body functions. There are three types of body fat;

  • Essential body fat

You need to have a certain amount of body fat to protect the body from infectious diseases and to guard the internal organs from damages.

  • Reserve body fat

This type of body fat does not cause any medical risks and act as “fuel” for use by the body.

  • Excess body fat

The ‘bad’ fat. The one that you are always stressed about and it is normally visibly around your waistline and causes serious health problems.

What is the minimum percent of body fat one should have?

The experts agreed that the minimum healthy body fat is six per cent for males and nine per cent for females. You need this minimum amount of body fat to avoid fatal diseases. This essential body fat is composed of two different components.

  • Subcutaneous fat

The fat layer that is directly under the skin is called subcutaneous fat. This fat layer is responsible to provide you with thermal and bruise protection.

  • Intramuscular fat

Intramuscular fat is the body fat you have in your muscle. Pretty much the same thin layers of fat you see within the meat when you buy from a butcher. This fat provides protection to the vital organs from shock forces.

However, do note that world-class athletes require body fat below the recommended levels to function. They can operate with body fat between three and four percent only!

You should never obsess about body fat as it is important for us to maintain a certain amount of body fat for our body to function! Check out what’s a normal body fat percentage for your body below.

Credit: Runtastic
Credit: Runtastic

Excessive body fat? Try the following ways to reduce your body fat;

  • Workout
  • Load up on fiber
  • Watch your sugar intake
  • Sleep!
  • Manage your stress

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