How Much Body Fat is Good for Health: Body fat Percentage

How much body fat is good for health body fat depends on many factors: How to calculate your body fat percentage and reduce it. With a table and the optimal value for your gender and age.

Which body fat percentage (KFA) is healthy and when does it get tricky? When stars and starlets lose weight and their crisp celebrity poses flicker on the screen and the six-pack shows up really nicely, it goes through all channels.

The celebrities have very different methods: some rely on intensive endurance and strength training with a personal coach, while others focus on the method of improving their diet.

US model Kim Kardashian, for example, has lost almost 20 kilos of body fat – through a diet with a strict 1800-calorie daily intake, and she also did crunchy workouts. Robbie Williams lost over 10 pounds in just a few months on a strictly vegan diet.

Since VIPs always have a role model function, experts are alarmed. After all, fat cells are not only responsible for a higher  BMI  (body mass index; ratio of weight to the square of body height) and unloved hip pads, but also protect the organs, among other things.

Insufficient fat reserves can also lead to immune diseases: namely, fatty tissue is an important factor in the immune system. The messenger substances from adipose tissue have a variety of effects on the immune system.
 

How Much Body Fat is Healthy?

The optimal body fat percentage, or KFA for short, depends on individual factors such as age, gender and body type. Our tables (see below) show you the ideal amount of body fat in each case.

If the value is too high, the bad blood values ​​and blood pressure usually rise, which often leads to calcification of the blood vessels.

This increases the risk of diseases such as stroke, cardiovascular disease and diabetes. You can determine your body fat percentage with the help of our  body fat calculator.

Above all, a considerable waist circumference is not without – because the bacon on the stomach, also known as visceral fatty tissue , is not without danger.

Important: Even slim people can have a high percentage of body fat, because fat is also stored inside the body, for example in the muscles and organs.

If, on the other hand, the body fat percentage is below 6 percent in men and 12 percent in women, the result is disorders in the organism.

Recommended Body fat Percentage for Men and Women

Body fat percentage man

AGEWELLMEDIUM HIGH
20 – 2414.919.023.3
25-2916.520.324.3
30 – 3418.021.525.2
35-3919.322.626.1
40-4420.523.626.9
45 – 4921.524.527.6
50 – 5922.725.628.7
> 6023.326.229.3
Figures in%
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Body fat Percentage Woman

AGEWELLMEDIUM HIGH
20 – 2422.125.029.6
25-2922.025.429.8
30 – 3422.726.430.5
35-3924.027.731.5
40-4425.629.332.8
45 – 4927.330.934.1
50 – 5929.733.136.2
> 6030.734.037.3
Figures in%

Body fat – Where it Sits is also Crucial

A nice round bottom is not only a visual asset! A higher body fat percentage on the buttocks and hips can protect against cardiovascular disease and diabetes.

Scientists from Oxford University in Great Britain have confirmed this. To this end, the researchers evaluated several large population studies that examined the relationship between an increased percentage of body fat in the buttocks, hips and thighs and various blood values.

The explanation: A high waist circumference or thick pads on the stomach can release harmful fatty acids and send cytokines into the body, which can cause inflammation.

Hip, thigh and buttock fat, on the other hand, traps these acids, preventing them from attaching to the liver or muscles, where they can cause numerous health problems.

The nice consequence of body fat in the right place: the blood fat values ​​are better, blood vessel calcification and stiffening are reduced.

This is how supposedly bad news becomes good, because: We all know how difficult it is to get rid of the butt and hip gold.

According to these new findings, it is no longer necessary – if only the belly fat is not too much. So your motto in the future should be: belly off!

“Fat deposits around the liver or heart are undesirable, and they can exist even though you can’t see them from the outside,” said Jimmy Bell of the MRC Clinical Sciences Center.

More and more studies would show that a person’s health did not depend on total body fat, but on where the fat stores are. 

Figure check is therefore always a complete program – nevertheless: Reducing the abdominal girth with suitable workouts is a start.

Reduce Body fat – This is How it Works

You don’t need to take a radical cure to shed a pound or two in the right places. On the one hand, that would be counterproductive, because strict diets, for example, slow down your metabolism and reduce your basic energy metabolism – the yo-yo effect occurs. Also, very ascetic eating programs and hard diets are usually not good for your health either.

In order to lose body fat sustainably, you should instead limit your daily energy intake moderately – or consume sufficient calories through sporting activities.
 

Lower Body fat Percentage Through a More Conscious Diet

Experts recommend a daily deficit between 500 and 800 calories for all those who want to lose weight, whether men or women. But what is your daily requirement actually?

You can calculate it quickly and easily with our calorie calculator . In order to reduce your body fat percentage, you then subtract at least 500 calories from the calculated total requirement – so you get your ideal energy input per day for losing weight.
 

Lower Body fat Percentage Through Sporting Activities

If it is not easy for you to lose weight by eating, then you still have the second way – through the increased consumption of energy.

These can be sporting activities such as running , cycling or swimming , but everyday activities also play a role.

On our homepage you will not only find a training program for every goal and every sporting discipline – fat killer plans for losing weight, but also for increasing performance.

Strength Training increases The Basal Metabolic Rate

Another way to attack the waist circumference and boost your metabolism is strength training . After all, muscles are the furnace of your body – the more of them you have, the higher your daily energy requirement or basal metabolic rate will be .

Nice side effect: You pad up in the appropriate places – crisp buttocks and a strong six-pack included.
 

Calculate Body fat Percentage: These Measurement Methods are Available

Bio-impedance analysis
If you want to know exactly: The bio-impedance analysis provides detailed information about your body composition. BIA body fat scales  for at home are available from sports retailers . In addition to the kilogram value, these body analysis products also determine the water, muscle and body fat percentage. 

So you can see immediately whether your training actually left unloved hip gold by the wayside or whether you simply lost water or even muscle tissue – which is very counterproductive if you want to reduce fat tissue. The more body fat there is, the higher the resistance.

The measured value is put into a formula in connection with previously entered data such as height, body weight, age and gender. However, these are not always accurate depending on the product. If you want exact values, there is definitely a BIA check carried out by sports doctors and sometimes alternative practitioners.

There, the current is not only conducted through the lower body (as with household fat scales), but also through the upper body using extra electrodes. This gives more correct results. However, physical activity, diet or drinking behavior, and the menstrual cycle all influence the results.
 

Near-infrared method
Here, an infrared head is aimed directly at a predetermined point on the biceps . However, this method is not exactly accurate, because a subcutaneous fold measurement is used to deduce the total body fat content.
 

Skin fold measurement with Caliper The most
cost-effective method:  Calipers for skin fold measurement are available online for less than 10 euros.

It is important to note that measurements must always be made at exactly the same points in order to achieve comparable results. Since you can’t do it cleanly on your own, you should have a partner to help you – if possible, always the same person.


Magnetic resonance tomography
Since this method, in contrast to the simple skin fold measurement & Co., is associated with a very high financial outlay, we will not go into it here, but only mention it for the sake of completeness.
 

BMI Still Meaningful?

Weigh, calculate or measure? What is the best way to find out whether you are too fat, where the fat is and how dangerous it is to health?

The Body Mass Index (BMI) has been the absolute benchmark for years. To determine it, body size and mass are related to each other. Shortcoming of the BMI: It does not differentiate between muscle and fat percentage, so that well-trained, heavy athletes, for example, come off far too badly. It doesn’t work properly with children either.

American researchers have now developed what is known as the Body Adiposity Index (BAI). It sets the hip circumference in relation to body size and makes it possible to determine the percentage of body fat.

Now researchers from the German Institute for Nutritional Research Potsdam-Rehbrücke and the University of Tübingen compared the significance of the two indices. Your verdict: the new BAI is not superior to the old BMI when it comes to assessing the percentage of body fat.

The BMI is even more closely related to the body fat distribution. “The assessment of the percentage of body fat with the help of the BAI was inaccurate, especially for male study participants,” said study director Mathias Schulze. According to the researchers, it makes sense to also measure the waist circumference to determine the risk of diabetes.

Body fat – Calculate BMI and BAI Correctly

These formulas show you at a glance how to calculate the BMI and BAI:
 

How to calculate the BMI
weight in kg divided by the square of the height in m
Evaluation: BMI up to 25 = normal.

This is how you calculate the BAI
hip circumference in cm divided by (height in m times the root of height in m) minus 18 = percentage of body fat.
Evaluation: women should not have more than 35%, men not more than 22%.

Measure your waist
around your belly button with a tape measure.
Evaluation: women should not measure more than 87 cm, men not more than 101 cm.

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