Body Fat, How To Control?
Our Body Fat, Sigh...
You and I, we always fight an ongoing battle to control our body fat. Some of us even declare an all-out war against it!
It's all about maintaining our weight at a healthy level by balancing calorie intake with calorie output.
Not like these:
Over fat? We want to lose it.....
"Under" fat? We want to increase it.......
Then the obsession - how to burn fat fast, lose fat quickly, power blast away the fat, torch away the fat......
I want to put everything into a proper perspective and clear up the misconception about body fat and weight lossso that you do them right from the beginning.
Differentiate the Fats
First, let me say it's important you know how to distinct between the 2 types of fat: essential and excess.
Essential Body Fat
It's the fat you need to maintain life and to reproduce.
For us ladies, we need 8 - 12%; for men, you need 3 - 6%.
Where's this essential body fat in your body?
You've it in your heart, liver, lungs, bone marrow, intestines, spleen, kidneys, spinal cord, nerve tissue, brain and cell membranes.
For us ladies, we also carry essential body fat in mammary glands and in the pelvic region, which is why we've the larger percentage.
Excess Body Fat
Basically, it's the fat you store in your body.
You find it in the tissue between muscle and skin.
We all need some excess body fat to protect our bones and organs, to insulate our body from cold and heat to maintain a good core body temperature.
For us ladies, the average stored body fat is 15 - 25% of total body weight; for men, it's 12 - 15%.
Problems start when this number increases to 30% for us ladies and 20% for men.
What if too Much Fat?
When you carry too much fat in your body, you've higher risk of cardiovascular (heart) and pulmonary (lung) diseases; high blood pressure; diabetes; certain cancers and gall bladder disease. Not to mention fatigue and depression.
Too much fat also stresses your metabolic system and creates more heat during physical activity as you need to move extra weight around. This then makes it hard for you to regulate your body temperature when you exercise.
In case of extremely excessive fat, the heat can't move from the working muscles to the skin due to the layers of fat between them. The result? Higher chance of heat exhaustion and heat stroke.
Body Weight Vs Body Fat
You know there's a difference between overweight and over fat?
Overweight means your total body weight exceeds a standardized weight based on height and sex.
The standardized weight table (that we're so used to) doesn't take into account our bone structure, frame size or the relationship of lean muscle mass to stored body fat.
You can be considered overweight by these tables even if you've low levels of body fat but higher weight in lean muscle and bone mass.
Conversely, you can be over fat and yet still within the normal weight range for your height because you've little muscle.
Muscle is denser than fat but less bulky than the same weight in fat.
For a healthy you (and me), we need to maintain a proper balance between muscle mass and fat.
And the only healthy way for that balance to happen is with a combination of exercise and healthy diet.
In other words, you must do both - exercise and eat healthy; not just one or the other.
If you just go by exercise or eat healthy alone, you end up only doing half of the requirement.
Avoid the Starvation Syndrome
I used to go to the extremes in the food department.....That's because I've the misconception about what fat and healthy weight loss are all about. I focused on losing weight at the expense of my health.
I went for weight loss programs that were neither balanced nor healthy. I thought if cutting down calories would help me to shed a few lbs, then surely starving myself would do even better and quicker?
See, healthy weight loss is all about balancing calorie intake with calorie output.
This means that your body weight stabilizes at a healthy weight when caloric intake = caloric expenditure. An imbalance in these 2 causes your body to change weight.
When you burn more than you eat, your body draws on fat to supply what's missing; you lose weight.
When you eat more calories than you burn, you store what's left over as body fat; you gain weight.
When you burn what you eat? You maintain weight.
The billions of fat cells in your body don't disappear; they get smaller or larger depending on whether you burn off or store your fat.
What happens if you go on an unbalanced, unnatural or extremely low calorie diet?
Well, your body thinks that it's starving and immediately lowers your metabolism to conserve energy. As a result, it retains the fat to protect you from starvation.
If you go back and forth, up and down, over and over in your dieting, you'll find that with each crash diet, it becomes easier to gain weight and harder to lose it, meaning it makes you resist to losing weight since your body lowers the metabolism to prevent starvation.
The cycle continues - losing lean muscle mass and increasing fat further slows down metabolism and you need to cut down calories even more to lose fat.
This kind of yo-yo dieting also causes loss of glycogen and water and leads to vitamin & mineral deficiencies, kidney problems, weakness, fatigue and nausea.
What's the Best way to Control your Body Fat?
Remember the balance I talk about earlier?
Plus, base your weight on what makes you feel comfortable.
At what weight you perform best?
Do you have to be a size 10 or are you happy in a size 12?
You don't have to have the body ideal hyped so much on TVs, in commercials, in fashions.......
That said, I would like to share here the many effective ways to control your body fat. Feel free to tap into the info for your body......
How fat cells work?
Visceral fat is dangerous to health - it raises risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke
Baby fat, the smart way to lose it!
Build muscle and burn fat, at the same time? How?
Binge eating disorder spoils your health; you eat food in excess, mostly unhealthy one
Optimized to burn body fat quickly and naturally!
In weight loss, burning fat banks on total calories and fat calories burned
Fat burning food? Fruits & vegetables; high fiber food; lean protein; good fats even!
Foods that burn calories? Yes, they exist. They burn more calories than they contain
Fat gain? sleep deprived; eat & sleep; skip breakfast; drink alcohol- these are the culprits
Green Tea Fat Burner - True?
Low fat cooking, with no loss in taste and flavor in your food!
Low fat diet doesn't mean you cut out all the fat; you still need some for health
Low fat diet plan; not dull and bland but full of flavor, taste and smell
Healthy, low fat snacks that pack not only nutrients but also fullness into you
Saturated fats are "bad guys" in food; they clog your arteries, break your heart......
Unsaturated fats? What"s so good about them? How about good health for your heart?
Monounsaturated fat is the "good guy" that promotes your heart health
Polyunsaturated fats are good fats, healthy for your heart
Trans fat, avoid this cholesterol double whammy!
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