How Much Body Fat is Healthy – Take the Mirror Test

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37 responses to “How Much Body Fat is Healthy – Take the Mirror Test”

  1. Has the common use of genetically modifying products had an effect on body fat percentage? Are there any respectable scientific studies on this subject yet?

    • They’re usually bred to be heavier/bigger/more resistant to pests I’m pretty sure. (Except in special cases: look up “golden rice” and how it’s saving lives in populations experiencing poverty)
      In theory you could modify a fruit to be higher in calories, but usually you can taste how sweet something is. If that’s a concern for you, you could always eat fruit/veg that isn’t as ripe?

  2. Most men that reach age 100 are 5 feet or even smaller. Everyone will shrink somewhat after age 75-80 or so. How tall you are matters more then what most people want to believe. Everyone want to be tall these days. Not understanding it actually accelerates ageing big time. It’s probably also a big factor why women generally live longer.

    • Overall, the average height in men around the world is 5 feet 7.5 inches. It doesn’t surprise me then that most men reaching 100 years old are around that height in the statistics.

      If you counted the centenarians only in Scandinavia or Holland, where men by average are taller than the rest of the world, i would guess that the statistics would look different.

    • What does “how tall you are” have to do with body composition? The two are not essentially related?

    • @@madbadtrad7746 You’re right. But the weight in relation to height does matter. I formulated it wrong.

  3. What’s your current body fat % Siim? I’m guessing you’ve lost more since you starting focusing on improving Vo2 max.

    Makes me wonder what body fat percentage is associated with peak performance of Vo2 max.

  4. men die younger mostly due to the fact we hold more visceral fat. (why we mainly die earlier)

  5. Is VO2max not correlated to all cause mortality in women then? I mean, if VO2max is calculated based on your body wheight and you have higher % body fat you should likely have less muscles at the same wheight. Should that not impact your cardiovascular fitness? Or can you be 35% fat and still have a really high VO2max?

  6. I’m a girl with a gym-body, our bodies retain a degree of fat regardless of how much we diet or exercise. 🤷🏻‍♀️

    • its not possible to retain fat if you stay in a calorie deficit. Its diff for women though. I suggest reading/listening to ‘Period Power by Maisie Hill. Great womens health book 🙂

    • @@jrm8206 If you are in a calorie deficit and the body wants to preserve fat stores (or just natural softness, lots of women with perfect bikini bodies technically have fat but there’s no unwanted fat) the body can retain water in those areas, slow the metabolism, start consuming muscle or brain tissue. The body can reach a plateau of fat loss when it still has visible stores of unwanted fat, so it’s understandable that someone with a perfect bikini body wanting to be dry/hard/shredded may be blocked from that by body actions (fine because most people don’t want women to look dry and hard.)

    • Yes. I’m familiar with calorie deficit, I do that but I still have a subtle lower tummy pooch – it’s not terrible, it’s just annoying.


  7. “Great visual guide”… How it is “great”, when at 23.4% and 30% you cant see any difference, like I would say even that 23.4% man have bigger love handles.

  8. Great video. I agree that the most important factor for health and longevity is staying lean. For men, it’s good to be 15% or less and for women, 25% or less. The mirror test is great. Another easy way to calculate the body fat percentage is to use the US Navy method. Unfortunately, YouTube doesn’t allow me to post links, but you can easily find the calculator on the web. It just needs a few body measurements and it’s pretty accurate.

  9. I’m slightly overweight and have terrific stamina and aerobic capacity. I’m also strong and work out 5 or 6 times per week. My blood work is also perfectly normal.

  10. You’re throwing out incredibly misleading numbers and wrong images. You don’t know the difference between subcutaneous fat and total fat.
    Women look the same as men with the same subcutaneous fat – they just have varying amounts of breast tissue etc.

    But then there is visceral fat which is dependent on total hormone health.
    Also variations in diet and exercies variety/ lifestyle (like skiing in mountains vs running on low ground) and associated local foods will shift where body prefers to store fat a bit.

  11. 4:45 “The lowest risk for men is below 85 cm or 33 inches”

    Actually, according to the graph the lowest risk for healthy non-smoking males is a waist circumference of 92-97 cm (36-38 inches).

  12. This guy is good, but makes some key errors. First, he assumes estrogen directly allows women to live longer with higher fat; men with significant fat have higher estrogen levels generally. Second, your waistline is not specifically visceral fat as he says; it simply implies more visceral fat. I can diet and lose some visceral fat but have stubborn low belly fat. Third the images he shows are not necessarily accurate, as people store fat different. I have muscular arms and legs, but more belly fat outside my abs (subcutaneous.) If I got liposuction, I’d more closely resemble the fat percentage they show. Dexascan won’t calculate the fat covering your abs, it will find every microgram of fat on your body including lipids lining muscle cells; caliper tests are better for most purposes except visceral fat which is under the muscle in the abdomen. A simple rule of thumb for visceral fat is if you can do a stomach vacuum, you probably don’t have much visceral fat; if not then diet strict until you can do a vacuum to get that visceral fat out of the way fast. Also, a small waist is good if you’re small; Arnold Schwarzennegger has a 34″ waist when he was in competition as a bodybuilder. For waist measurement, it’s best to say ‘less than 1″ thick or less than 5″ excess around the waist which could be a waist below 34″ on a slim guy and under 39″ for a large man (under 40 inches is key according to some studies) if one carries fat evenly but that could be an extra 2″ thick belly on someone who carries it all in front and they’d want to diet. Having abs year round is less healthy if it doesn’t come natural, Larry Scott said the optimal level was to just let your abs fill in to cover the ridges when building muscle (he was naturally lean but a hard gainer, he gained it through knowledge and some moderate steroid use, though once it was illegal he claimed he never took them.)

  13. I’m glad he covered the differences between men and women. I’d add, though, that when women have low body fat and also low weight, they risk osteoporosis at some level.

  14. lol, the shot of christian bale in the machinist at 96 lbs.
    I remember when that came out you had to see it just to see how emaciated bale looked. He said he got that low eating one can of tuna and an apple a day for like 6 weeks. The director forced him stop the diet before principal filming finished.

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