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How to calculate body fat (BF): the formula for the calculator and why is it worth it?

Everyone has fat that is present in the body regardless of age and gender. Our body consists of fats as well as as carbohydrates and proteins, but the number of individual groups of these ingredients depends on both the diet and the health of individuals. Due to the possibilities given to people nowadays it is relatively easy to check if everything is working with the level of body fat. When we find out, it will be easier for us to correct this level. Of course, it should be done on the basis of the guidelines of a more experienced person, namely a nutritionist or trainer.

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Table of content

What is body fat?

Adipose tissue belongs to the group of connective tissues and its predominant amount is found primarily in the subcutaneous tissue. The remaining parts of adipose tissue can be found, for example, on the abdomen, where definitely more of them accumulate, and around internal organs.

Adipose tissue consists primarily of fat cells, but you can also extract macrophages, fibroblasts, preadipocytes, or stromal cells.

body fat

During three stages of life, a constant caloric surplus is formed, which later allows it to constantly multiply adipose tissue. These stages are fetal life, the end of the first year of life and adolescence.

There are two types of fat in the human body, brown and yellow. The latter belongs to the so-called inferior category, and its appearance resembles an expanding yellow drop. Yellow tissue is designed to accumulate excess energy. Brown tissue is definitely smaller than yellow and its main task is to store and maintain the body at the right temperature. The tissue consists of joined together, numerous, tiny droplets, which serves one nucleus.

Body fat functions

  1. As the first, best-known function of adipose tissue can be included energy storage, which deals with yellow tissue.
  2. The second function is to actively participate in metabolic processes, such as the feeling of appetite, the rate of blood clotting, regulation of blood pressure, or insulin sensitivity.
  3. The third function is immune stimulation. Fat tissue has macrophages in its composition, which they absorb and stimulate the immune system to act.
  4. The fourth function is thermoregulation and thermal insulation known to all.
  5. The fifth function is to protect internal organs by encasing them with a layer of fat cells.
  6. The sixth function refers to keeping the body warm.

How much body fat should be?

The amount of body fat depends on several basic factors. The older a person is, the more body fat can be found. Gender is also important. Women, due to their physique, the possibility of pregnancy and a much more developed hormonal economy, have clearly higher levels of body fat and this is the most natural. – healthline.com says.

body fat in women

For example. A man and a woman aged 30, at the same level of fitness, weighting and measuring will have respectively: a man within 15% and a woman within 25% in an optimal situation.

The amount of body fat changes and is influenced by the aforementioned diet, sports, daily activities, stress and the form of work that is done. Genetics also play a small role here. People who have obese parents will have a more difficult task when it comes to fighting with extra kilos. However, this fight is not immediately doomed.

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BF calculator

How to calculate body fat? For what? In order to check whether we are not going in the wrong health direction and whether there is still a chance to return from it. Trying to lose extra weight, we are usually guided by the level of our weight, and this is not just about it. While decreasing the number of kilograms, you also need to reduce the percentage of body fat (BF). Otherwise the diet does not make much sense.

body fat calculator

To calculate the percentage of body fat as quickly and as accurately as possible, you should either use the BF (Body Fat) calculator available on many pages or calculate this content on foot.

The calculators available on the websites require some important data and for the result to be reliable, it should be given as accurately as possible. Examples of a set of such data include, for example, age, gender, neck circumference at the narrowest point, waist circumference at the narrowest point and hip circumference at the widest point. The result is extremely accurate and the error limit is 1 to 3% when giving exact dimensions.

calculator body fat

If we want to test our strength and we are not afraid of calculating the fat content step by step, without a calculator, nothing stands in the way. The formula below is how to calculate the percentage of body fat.

Formula for a man:

Body density = 1.1093800 – (0.0008267 * X3) + 0.0000016 * X3 ^ 2) – (0.0002574 * X4)
Where:
X3 – sum of measurements (chest, navel, thigh)
X3 ^ 2 – the sum of measurements (chest, navel, thigh) raised to the second power.
X4 – age in years.
/ – division
* – multiplication
^ – power

To get the percentage content use the formula:

BF% = (457 / Body density) – 414.2 or BF% = (495 / Body density) – 450

Pattern for a woman:

Body density = 1.099421 – (0.0009929 * X3) + (0.0000023 * X3 ^ 2) – (0.0001392 * X4)
Where:
X3 = Sum of triceps, hips and thighs measurement
X3 ^ 2 = Sum of triceps, hips and thighs measurement raised to the power of two.
X4 = Age in years.
/ – division
* – multiplication
^ – power

For the percentage result we use the formula:

BF% = (457 / Body density) – 414.2 or BF% = (495 / Body density) – 450

What else can you measure the percentage of body fat?

In addition to using the BF calculator or calculating the body fat manually, there are many other ways to calculate your body fat. It should also be mentioned that there is no method that would give one hundred percent exact result. However, maybe one day it will be invented, but so far it has not been successful.

The first method can be hydrostatic weighing, which involves immersing in a tank of water and checking how much water has risen above the border.

The Jackson / Pollock method involves measuring skin folds. Men catch the folds on the chest, abdomen, near the navel and thigh, and women at the height of the triceps, hips, abdomen near the navel and also on the thigh. The measurements obtained are entered in a complicated formula or a calculator available on the Internet.

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Another method is DEXA or DXA, which involves testing two-energy X-ray absorption. This test involves X-ray exposure, practically the same as during a standard X-ray examination. Exposure usually lasts one to four minutes, but it may as well last longer. Radiology.ucsf.edu says that different tissues absorb doses of X-rays to varying degrees, which is why you can distinguish fat from muscle, bone, or any other tissue. DEXA gives high calculation accuracy of 2%, which is close to the accuracy of hydrostatic weighing.

DXA

Another method is TANITA, i.e. a body composition analyzer – research. This is the so-called electrical bioimpedance method, abbreviated BIA. This method involves passing electricity through the body. However, it is not dangerous and only serves to measure body fat content, just like other methods described in the article. Depending on the type of body area, the device receives a different level of electrical resistance, thanks to which it is possible to distinguish individual elements of the interior of the body from bones, internal organs and various types of tissues. This method is troublesome because only very expensive, professional devices can give a really reliable result.

fat control

Regardless of the method you choose, remember to be consistent. If you started your adventure with knowing the body from a specific test, you should stick to it and repeat it regularly to see if we have achieved any effects. If we change methods, or at least devices for measuring BF, our results will not be very supportive. Each device may give slightly different results and forgetting about the consequences, we can forget about any correct statistics of fat measurements in our body.

How to control body fat?

There are many ways and methods to control the level of fats in the body. Unfortunately, there is no universal solution for everyone and it would be difficult to create one because of the diversity of people, their lifestyles, climate zones, age, gender, or genetic loads.

If a person is chronically ill or was born with a genetic dysfunction, for example with Down syndrome, it will be difficult to put him in the right place in the table with the optimal fat content. – coachmag.co.uk says.

Therefore, everyone should be able to listen to their own body and act according to what they feel is best for them. A proper diet, a lot of fluids and an active lifestyle should significantly improve the quality of life for all of us. However, everyone knows how difficult it is today, even for regular walks or consistent drinking of a certain amount of water during the day. Nevertheless, you should know that until we start caring for ourselves, nothing will change and only we can blame ourselves in most cases.

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It is worth it, if only we have the opportunity to use the advice of a specialist, at least several times! It is not said that we have to go to him often and regularly, even though this would be an ideal solution. A dietitian or trainer with experience will direct us properly by offering solutions ideal for us.

Therefore, check your fat level, let’s go to the dietitian. Let;s walkt a little bit instead of driving a car everywhere or on an electric scooter.

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