How the Past Has Brought Me to The Present! Part 13

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Here’s an example of how I helped others to learn using a visual… on please!

To prepare for a presentation titled Weight Management Techniques for my Personal & Consumer Health course at ISU in November of 1993, I visited my local Fareway grocery store meat man down the street.  He happily turned over five pounds of meat fat free of charge, chuckling at my request and my reason for it.

My presentation focused on how to maintain a healthy body composition and to help avoid disease through a combination of moderate exercise and a low-fat diet.  I stressed the importance of understanding your own physical make-up and inner motivations before starting a weight reduction program.  I offered a number of techniques that can be used to meet your weight loss objectives.  At the end of the presentation, as a grand finale, I passed around the blob of fat to serve as a visual.

This is 1 pound of body fat.  It was passed around to every student in class…gross…..but effective!

To get to know your own physical make-up, one method is to estimate your body fat percentage.  The Body Mass Index (BMI)  is based upon simple weight and height measures.

The BMI calculation is an indirect measurement, and has been found to be a fairly reliable indicator of body fat measurements in most people. It is a number representing your weight distribution and, for most, is a good quantifier to determine if you are overweight.

If you have a lot of muscle mass, you’ll likely have higher limits. Here’s a BMI calculator from the Mayo Clinic for your reference.   A value between 18.5 and 25 is considered a normal weight.

Another method, now a days, it to look at your “Lean Body Mass”, and know how to calculate it.  What is Lean Body Mass (aka LBM)? Simply put, lean body mass is comprised of everything in your body besides body fat.  Your lean body mass includes:

 …and anything else in our bodies that has mass and is not fat.  As an aside, for the average adult male about 42% of body weight is skeletal muscle and it’s about 35% for females.

Lean Body Mass Formula: Lean Body Mass = Body Weight – (Body Weight x Body Fat %)

This equation is taking your body weight in pounds and subtracting it from the amount of fat you have in your body in terms of pounds.  Simple.  If you don’t know how to measure your body fat, here are are Ways  to Measure Body Fat.

Here’s another web page that will help you calculate your Body Mass Index (BMI), Waist-to-Height ratio, percent body fat, and lean body mass.  Diet Calculator, Body Fat Calculator


Ideal Body Weight and Percent Body Fat

The ideal weight and fat-lean ratio varies considerably for men and women and by age, but the minimum percent of body fat considered safe for good health is 5 percent for males and 12% for females. The average adult body fat is closer to 15 to 18% for men and 22 to 25% for women.

I hope the information in this post is helpful to you.  I am in progress of changing my body composition (aka:  losing body fat, lowering my weight, trying to ditch the gut, firming up, whatever!!!…) through exercising and watching what I eat, especially tracking daily carb and sugar intake.

I’ve been into yoga for well over a year, and I recently started a step aerobics class.  If there is something you feel you need to do to get fit, start now.  Try something! Do it for yourself.

Dennis has the best words of wisdom:

Thank you for reading!  On to more next week!  Post 14 I believe! Any comments are welcome!


My professional rehabilitation counseling practice is focused on helping people find a place in the workforce

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