University of Phoenix
Body Compositions and Excess Body Fat Body composition is the body’s relative amount of fat to fat-free mass. Those with optimal body composition are typically healthier, move more easily and efficiently, and in general, feel better than those with less-than-ideal body composition. If you can achieve a better body composition goes a long way toward improving your quality of life and overall wellness. Body composition is divided into two separate types of mass: fat-free mass -- which is comprised of all of the body’s non-fat tissues -- and body fat. Fat-free mass includes bone, water, muscle, and tissues. Body fat is literally fat located within the body. Some fat is necessary for overall health; it helps protect internal organs, provides energy and regulates hormones that perform various functions in body regulation. However, when someone is overweight or obese, they have an excessive accumulation of body fat. Body fat includes essential fats, such as lipids, and nonessential body fats; these fats make up around five percent of total body weight for men, and up to 12 percent for women. Nonessential fat is found mainly within fat cells and adipose tissue, below the skin and surrounding major organs. The amount of nonessential fat stored in the body is variable among individuals on factors such as age, gender, and diet. Excess nonessential fat can normally be attributed to consuming more food energy than what is burned through metabolic functions and activity. Body fat percentage is the percentage of total body weight that is comprised of fat. Decreasing your body fat percentage, if it is too high, isn’t just about improving your appearance. A high percentage of body fat can have a negative effect on your overall well-being: Excess fat has been linked to numerous health problems such as increased risk for diseases such as cancer, diabetes and heart disease. Having excess fat, specifically surrounding the internal organs, can damage your health and contribute to serious medical conditions such as liver disease. A lack of energy balance most often causes overweight and obesity. Energy balance means that your energy IN equals your energy OUT.
Energy IN is the amount of energy or calories you get from food and drinks. Energy OUT is the amount of energy your body uses for things like breathing, digesting, and being physically active.
To maintain a healthy weight, your energy IN and OUT don't have to balance exactly every day. It's the balance over time that helps you maintain a healthy weight.
The same amount of energy IN and energy OUT over time = weight stays the same
More energy IN than energy OUT over time = weight gain
More energy OUT than energy IN over time = weight loss
Overweight and obesity happen over time when you take in more calories than you use.
An Inactive Lifestyle
Many Americans aren't very physically active. One reason for this is that many people spend hours in front of TVs and computers doing work, schoolwork, and leisure activities. In fact, more than 2 hours a day of regular TV viewing time has been linked to overweight and obesity.
Other reasons for not being active include: relying on cars instead of walking, fewer physical demands at work or at home because of modern technology and conveniences, and lack of physical education classes in schools.
People who are inactive are more likely to gain weight because they don't burn the calories that they take in from food and drinks. An inactive lifestyle also raises your risk for coronary heart disease ,high blood pressure, diabetes, colon cancer, and other health problems.
Our environment doesn't support healthy lifestyle habits; in fact, it encourages obesity. Some reasons include:
Lack of neighborhood sidewalks and safe places for recreation. Not having area parks, trails, sidewalks, and affordable gyms makes it