We all are motivated to visit the gym and train hard for multiple reasons, but a lot of people are united by one specific goal, they are determined to lose weight and lower their BMI.
Body fat plays a very important role in the body due to its functional aspects. Both men and women have minimal values of body fat required to facilitate important physiological activities. The lowest percentage of body fat for normal homeostasis is referred to as essential body fat.
Although, the numbers for males and females are different, for males, it’s between 3 – 5% and for women 11 – 14%, in both cases the EBF should not drop lower. If levels are dropping below the essential crease, chances of having problems with thermoregulation and metabolic functions will be drastically increased.
On top of that, fat distribution is also dependent on genes and gender. We separate two body types: Android and Gynoid. When Fat distribution is viewed by region of the body, obesity which is related to central storage of fat is an android obesity. Gynoid storage reflects a greater distribution of fat in the lower region.
It is also important to understand the differences between Subcutaneous and Visceral fat. Subcutaneous fat is located right below skin, this is what we all see and want to get rid of. Whereas, Visceral fat is in and around the organs, which we cannot see. The ladder being much more dangerous to our health.
We must start looking at fat in a different way. Yes, being overweight may give us more health risks but having no fat can also lead to serious health risks. As mentioned above, visceral fat surrounds the organs so you can’t see it, but it is much worse and can be life threatening compared to subcutaneous fat which we see on our stomachs and thighs but this fat is easy to get rid of and not as dangerous
Knowing this, you may ask your gym professional to measure your BMI or body fat % with a skin fold caliper to prioritize your goals more accurately and make your training safer, more efficient and effective.