Body Composition is More Than Just Your Weight Body
Weight alone (what the scale says) is not a definitive assessment of body composition. Even after losing weight, you might still be considered over-fat. This occurs when the weight you lose comes predominantly from muscle and not from fat-producing unhealthy body composition. Having excess fat on the inside but looking normal on the outside may result in disease risks that are similar to those who appear overtly overweight.
The human body is composed of a variety of different tissue types. The so-called ‘lean’ tissues, such as muscle, bone, and organs are metabolically active, — while adipose, or fat tissue, is not.
Scales that measure only weight do not determine the lean-to-fat ratio of that weight; an individual can be “over-weight” and not “over-fat.” A bodybuilder, for example, may be only 8% body fat, yet at 100kg may be considered “over-weight” by a typical height-weight chart. A person can also look thin or normal weight and be over-fat, as stated above. Therefore, these charts are not a good indication of a person’s ideal body weight for optimal health, much less for athletic performance. How much lean muscle mass do you have? You can purchase a body composition scale, also call a body fat scale, for just over $100 online. These are generally quite accurate and are very useful for measuring your lean-to-fat ratio. They tell you where you are, and help encourage you to improve your state of well being.
Why Is Body Composition Important to My Health?
Research has shown that body composition is directly related to health. A normal balance of body fat is associated with good health and longevity. Excess fat in relation to lean body mass, known as altered body composition, can greatly increase your risk of cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and more.
A traditional approach to improving body composition includes exercise and reduced caloric intake, but nutritional supplementation may also offer additional, significant benefits. For example, one study comparing a supervised, nutrition-based body composition program* to a popular, over-the-counter diet drink showed dramatically different results. Those on a supervised program achieved 11 pounds of weight loss from fat and they actually increased their muscle mass. The patients on the over-the-counter diet drink lost the majority of their weight from muscle rather than body fat-despite being advised the same foods and exercise routine as those on the supervised program. * labeled Mediterranean Diet with Low Glycemic Index and Medical Food (Ultra Meal™, Metagenics).