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How to Reduce your Body Fat?

Updated on May 26, 2009

 

Body Fat

 

Body fat is commonly associated with weight. The truth is, weight is the measurement of our total body mass. Body fat percentage is the percentage of fat your body contains.

While too much fat in the body is bad, too little of it is not good either. Fat is an essential component of our energy resource and regulator of our body temperature. To be healthy, one must have a good body fat percentage.

The ideal body fat percentage would vary for men and women, their age, culture, and lifestyle. In general, the minimum body fat percentage is 5 percent for men and 12 percent for women. Body fat over 25 percent is considered obese, and therefore unhealthy.

Body fat can help athletes perform better. While carbohydrates remain as the main source of energy, fat can also help provide energy when carbohydrate levels run low.

Although fat can serve as source of energy, it is not a good idea to make it as a primary source because fat is slowly digested in the stomach and stays for a long time if not used. It can also contribute to gastrointestinal discomfort. Full release of energy in fat requires great amount of oxygen, which limits and slows the energy availability. As a rule, fat intake should be at minimum before exercising.

The best time to consume healthy fats is at least 6 hours before exercising.

With the correct body fat percentage, athletes can expect to increase their energy and increase their performance in their maximum levels. Excess fat is converted, thus increasing the lean muscle mass. Less body fat indeed increases the health condition and performance of an athlete.

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