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Do You Have Fat in Its Place?

By Tom Herrin

Most of the time, when we think about fat, it is in terms of how we see ourselves in our clothes.  Do they fit in a way that complements us?  Are they too tight?  We also may think of those who are the most trim as being the ones who are the picture of health.  Fat may actually have lots of meanings depending upon just what kinds of fat we are referring to.  There are several different kinds of fat, and the purposes served by these fats are even more diverse than the fats themselves.  In terms of fats in general, we may all need some kinds to be healthy, but other kinds of fats may contribute to some big health challenges. 

Measuring Body Fat

In recent years, we have begun to find new ways to quantify fat in terms of the positive or negative ways it affects the body.  Assessing the amount of body fat we have has become a standard practice.  The simple way it is done seems to be by measuring the body in a few different places.  Some have developed a scale that may be used as a guide.  Most of these use general frame type for the individual as compared to age, weight, and height.  This can provide a basic idea of what the body mass index, or BMI, may be for that individual.  Of course, the physical activity level of the person may also be a factor.  This is designed to give, at least, an idea of how much body fat is there.  This is obviously referring to subcutaneous fat.  This is the fat just under the skin.  

Some Fats Are Needed

While we tend to be concerned about fats, in general, some of them are necessary in order for us to have good health.  There are some that help our brains function well.  Other fats can help regulate our body temperature, help store vitamins, and support bones and nerves.  We should take care to avoid eliminating the good fats, or our bodies may suffer the consequences.  All fat is not bad fat.  Some are considered to be part of good health.

Some Fats Are Bad News

By now, most of us recognize fat that is really bad.  Belly fat seems to have gained a lot of notoriety in the past few years.  It seems to have an independent function in some cases.  It is a white fat that is stored around organs.  It is known to cause issues with stroke, diabetes, heart disease, and some cancers.  Anytime we can find ways to prevent this kind of fat from building up in our bodies, we will be much healthier.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Berkeley, Calif.

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