What is a Body Fat Percentage ?

As this year 2011 draws close to its end, most Americans are pummeled by statistics to show that as a nation, Americans have an increased rate of prevalence of obesity. Sample this slice of statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – States like Mississippi, West Virginia and Alabama topped the chart with over 32 % obesity rates. And the statistics for the rest of the world is not encouraging too. The WHO is concerned that by the year 2015, there will be about 2.3 billion overweight people from the total world population of 7 billion and about 700 million of them will be obese.

According to a survey in the UK, English women added about 6.5 inches to their waist measurement in the last 50 years.

The causes attributed to this modern malaise are the meteoric rise in sedentary jobs, motorized transportation, labor saving devices and convenience foods.

Increased obesity has a correlation to increased prevalence of heart disease, type II diabetes, osteoarthritis, stroke, deep vein thrombosis and even cancer. Associated emotional problems like low self-esteem and depression too may go unrecognized.

Now that we have placed some statistics to show the gloomy nature of this burgeoning issue, we will see ways of tackling this issue closer at home. For people like you and me, radical options like ditching the car or starvation diets are not alluring and practical.

The most common way to classify overweight and obesity is the Body Mass Index or BMI as it is commonly known. Women are more predisposed to higher percentage of body fat when compared with men for the same BMI. The female hormone estrogen contributes to about 5% more body fat in women than men. BMI calculation does not indicate the amount of body fat but instead throws light on the relative percentage of fat and muscle mass as compared to the height. BMI or Body Mass Index is one of the indicators of a person’s overall health condition. The BMI chart must not be viewed in isolation but along with the person’s age, lifestyle and other related issues.

But, a drawback with BMI is that it doesn’t take into account a person’s body fat content. There are possibilities that BMI may overestimate body fat if the person is muscular or athletic and report a high BMI. Likewise, if the person has low muscle mass it may underestimate body fat and report a low BMI.

What are the facts associated with Body fats ?

What is a Body Fat Percentage ?

How do you reliably measure the Body fat percentage ?

Our editorial researchers have delved into this quintessential subject and have come up with answers to the questions raised above.

We will point you to one such page here: Body Fat Percentage

 

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