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Your body is composed of two types of mass: body fat and fat-free mass.
Body fat can be found in muscle tissue, under the skin (subcutaneous fat), or around organs (visceral fat). Some fat is necessary for overall health. It is called essential fat and it helps protect internal organs, stores fuel for energy, and regulates important body hormones. But you may also have excess storage of fat and non-essential body fat.
Fat-free mass includes bone, water, muscle, organs, and tissues. It may also be called lean tissue. These tissues are metabolically active, burning calories for energy, while body fat is not.
Body fat percent is a measurement of body composition telling how much of the weight of your body is fat. The percentage of your body that is not fat is fat-free mass. There are normal ranges for body fat, which differ for men and women.
Weighing yourself on a regular bathroom scale does not truly assess your body composition because a regular scale cannot tell how much of your total weight is comprised of water, fat, or muscle.
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