Don't Be Skinny Fat - Use Exercise to Give You a Lean Healthy Body
Sometimes we get locked into the bad habit of measuring our health and wellness by looking at the number on the bathroom scale. But this method of evaluating ourselves is not very accurate as even if the scale shows a low number it does not show the ratio of lean muscle mass to the percentage of body fat.
A person may not weigh very much but still be over fat. There is a new name for this and it is "skinny fat". This is defined as having low lean body mass and high body fat percentage. A thin person can have high body fat, higher in some cases than people who are visually overweight and this can be a deceptive and dangerous condition.
The truth is this: Your body weight does not equal health or fitness and just because you are thin does not mean that you are healthy. Any method that has you losing weight without obtaining health and fitness is not doing it right. A skinny fat body is usually obtained by restrictive dieting and lack of muscle toning and building exercise. Instead of a "skin and bones" diet, it called be called the "bones and fat" diet.
Unsafe dieting that involves excessive caloric restriction (below 1,200 calories per day) can cause loss of muscle as well as body fat. Compounding insufficient calories and a reliance on cardio type exercise (walking, jogging, cycling etc) promotes muscle loss and that leads to a drop in metabolic rate (the rate the body burns fuel). Why would anyone want to diet or exercise off all the muscle, when MUSCLE is the engine that drives your metabolism?
Knowing these facts it is crucial to avoid harmful diet programs that result in loss of muscle. Muscle tissue is more dense than fat, an important fact to consider when stepping on the scale. If your weight loss plan includes strength training (as it should), your best incentive is to judge your progress by the fit and feel of your clothes rather than your weight. Realize it is not body weight but your body composition that is important in assessing health.
The world is full of men and women who are "skinny fat". What really matters when it comes to getting healthy and losing weight is being fit and strong and taking good care of your body in the process. Simply losing weight does not mean you have a healthy heart but getting fit and eating healthfully on the other hand can guarantee an improvement in heart health and a reduced risk of heart disease. Simply losing weight is not going to lower your risk of contracting certain types of cancers, but regularly exercising and eating healthfully certainly can.
Losing weight cannot prevent osteoporosis, boost your immune system, help you keep excess weight off for life, increase your energy levels or improve your physical performance but by exercising regularly and eating healthfully, you absolutely can.
So what does this really mean? Losing weight is not the important part of getting healthy - the important things to consider are a proper exercise program that includes strength training exercise and eating small meals throughout the day made up of whole natural foods with minimum processing to support the exercise program.
There is simply no substitute for strength training in keeping your muscle tissue, stoking your metabolism, getting you lean, making you biologically young and keeping you healthy. A body with a lower percentage of fat and a higher percentage of muscle tissue means your body is structurally more healthy and looks great too - toned and sleek and more athletic like.
To make the changes necessary to reverse the skinny fat body syndrome seek help from a fitness professional to set up your exercise program and teach you how to perform the exercises properly. It is important to exercise at the right level of intensity (degree of difficulty) along with the right duration and frequency.
Even if you are thin and think you are exempt from having to exercise think again as you may actually have high body fat and the foundation for chronic disease. No good looking great in a tight pair of jeans but would never in a million years by willing to expose an upper arm or leg. Remember it is not about being "skinny" but rather about being "lean" and being "healthy."
Do you want to discover the secret to rejuvenating your body, regaining lost vitality and improving the quality of your life? Download my free ebook "I've Found the Fountain of Youth - Let Me Show You Too!" Health Related Fitness
Carolyn Hansen is a certified fitness expert and fitness center owner who coaches clients to look and feel younger. In her nearly 30 years of fitness and bodybuilding competition experience she has helped thousands of people start their journey towards being strong, fit and youthful at any age.
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