Being healthy entails much more than simply knowing your weight. Your weight might be an important sign of your health, but it doesn't always tell the entire story. Your body weight is made up of several components, but the two forms of tissue that can be the most telling markers of your health and fitness are muscle and fat.
When it comes to body composition and weight, Skeletal Muscle Mass is the most important factor to consider. These are the muscles that you can usually change by combining a nutritious diet with regular exercise. Muscle tissue is denser than fat tissue, therefore it takes up less space for the same amount of weight.
Increased muscle has a slew of advantages, including improved disease recovery, less insulin resistance, improved mobility as you age, and, of course, helping to prevent fat by improving your BMR and metabolism.
Fat, also known as adipose tissue, is another key contributor to your overall body weight - and it's often the one that individuals want to lose weight for. The fat that sits beneath the skin is known as subcutaneous fat. Visceral fat, on the other hand, surrounds your organs and is found deep within your abdominal cavity.
How To Know If You Are Losing Weight or Fat?
To be sure, if you are losing fat or just overall weight, you'll need to measure your body composition regularly. Calipers, hydrostatic weighing, DEXA, and BIA are some of the devices and procedures used to determine body composition. Make sure you have a device that can reliably provide accurate results. If possible, try to get the results interpreted by a fitness expert or nutritionist so they can suggest individualized suggestions based on your results.
How to Avoid Regaining Weight?
Basal Metabolic Rate (as seen in the above InBody result sheet) is directly influenced by the amount of lean body mass you have - this is commonly known as metabolism. The number of calories your body burns at rest is known as your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). Focusing on weight loss without making any changes to minimize lean body mass loss results in decreasing your metabolism.
While you will likely lose some lean body mass with any weight loss program, you should try to minimize the loss of muscle mass as much as possible. A poor skeletal muscle mass ratio will result in poor metabolism and increase your chances of regaining weight. A slow metabolism combined with erratic eating habits almost guarantees weight gain.
If you don't watch your calorie intake and create more lean body mass and skeletal muscle to aid your metabolism growth, weight regain is a strong risk. Even after you reach your goal weight, it's critical to focus on body composition, muscular development, and modifying your eating habits.
While losing fat may take longer than planned, it’s a healthier option in the long run as you can avoid losing significant muscle mass. Would you rather lose 30 pounds in less than a year only to gain it all back, or take the time to make small, lasting changes that will result in a lifetime of excellent health? The choice seems pretty obvious.