Calculate Your Body Fat Percentage
An Estimation of Your Body Fat Percentage
Body fat percentage is an important measure of overall health and fitness. It is calculated using a formula that takes into account a person’s height, weight, age, and gender. The most commonly used formula was first introduced in a research article titled “Body mass index as a measure of body fatness: age- and sex-specific prediction formula,” published in the British Journal of Nutrition in 1991, with P. Deurenberg as the lead researcher.
The formula uses a person’s body mass index (BMI) to estimate their body fat percentage. For men, the formula is (1.20 x BMI) + (0.23 x Age) – 16.2, while for women, it is (1.20 x BMI) + (0.23 x Age) – 5.4. BMI is calculated by dividing a person’s weight in kilograms by their height in meters squared.
Using this formula, we have created a body fat percentage calculator. It includes input fields for a person’s height and weight in centimetres and kilograms, respectively. The calculator also provides a result that falls within a certain range, which can be used to determine if the person’s body fat percentage is within a healthy range for their age and gender.
For men, the healthy range of body fat percentage is as follows:
Essential fat: 2-5%
Obese: 25% or higher
For women, the healthy range of body fat percentage is as follows:
Essential fat: 10-13%
Obese: 32% or higher
Essential fat is the minimum amount of body fat that is necessary for a person to maintain basic physical and physiological health. For men, this is generally around 2-5% body fat, while for women it is around 10-13%.
Falling below the essential fat range can be dangerous and lead to a number of health complications. These can include:
- Hormonal imbalances: When body fat drops too low, hormonal imbalances can occur. This can lead to a range of issues such as decreased testosterone levels in men, irregular periods in women, and reduced bone density.
- Organ damage: Body fat serves as a cushion and protective layer around the organs. If the body fat percentage drops too low, there is a risk of organ damage or failure due to a lack of protection.
- Weakened immune system: Body fat plays an important role in supporting the immune system. If body fat levels are too low, the immune system may become weakened and more susceptible to illness and infection.
- Malnutrition: In some cases, falling below the essential fat range can be a sign of malnutrition. Malnutrition can lead to a range of health issues, including weakness, fatigue, and an increased risk of infection.
Overall, it is important to maintain a healthy body fat percentage and avoid falling below the essential fat range. If you are concerned about your body fat percentage, it is recommended to speak with a healthcare professional or a registered dietitian.
It is important to note that body fat percentage is just one of many measures of overall health and fitness. Other factors such as diet, exercise, and genetics can also play a significant role. Additionally, while this formula is widely used, it is not perfect and may not provide accurate results for everyone.
Deurenberg P, Weststrate JA, Seidell JC. Body mass index as a measure of body fatness: age- and sex-specific prediction formula. Br J Nutr. 1991 Mar
- Mayo Clinic Staff. (2022). Body fat percentage: What is it, how to measure it and healthy ranges. Mayo Clinic.