Moderation is the key in all things.
The first time most people use body fat percentage scales, they typically get a rating that is higher than they want. Sometimes, this causes completely the wrong reaction. A lot of people are in denial that they are overweight until they see the body fat scale measurement, at which point they freak out. They believe that they have to lose all the weight immediately. Many of these people take extreme measures towards dieting. Either they will completely starve themselves in an attempt to please the body fat scale, or else they will burn out too quickly and give up on losing weight. Neither of these are good options.
People always worry about weight nowadays. They want to be thinner than their friends, be able to fit into clothes that they could not fit into since high school, and look like the celebrities on TV. Weight, however, is not the issue. Body fat is. If you have too high a body fat rating, you are at risk of heart disease. Paradoxically, however, body composition that is too low on the body fat scale also puts strain on your heart. Whether you are one of the millions of obese Americans, or one of the many hundreds of thousands of underweight ones, a body fat scale can improve your health and perhaps save your life.
Although a lot of people go in for an electric body fat scale, you really can make do with an old-fashioned set of calipers. There are some simple measurements that you can do that can show body fat accurately enough. Typically, you are supposed to keep your body fat at somewhere around 5% of your mass. Although many athletes to go lower, below 3% can be unhealthy. Any lower rating on the body fat scale can be downright dangerous.
The best choice is to set incremental goals. It is very difficult to set goals for losing weight by percentage on the body fat scales. Usually, you will need an experienced trainer to do this. The problem is that, if you are exercising, you will gain muscle mass at the same time as you lose fat. This makes it very difficult to calculate goals for the body fat scales. It might be better to try to lose 5 or 10 pounds a month until you reach your desired body fat scale level.
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