Body Fat Chart

Having a normal body fat percentage is vital to maintaining a healthy lifestyle. A high percentage of body fat means you are of low fitness and increased risk of heart disease, diabetes and cancer. However, having too little body fat carries similar health risk.

Because of the prevalence of obesity, many people are concerned about their appearance and body fat percentage. Some wonder if they have a normal or ideal body fat percentage. Knowing the average body fat percentage can give you a good overview of your health.

There is an optimal health range depending on your level of fitness, age and weight. Fat is responsible for absorbing nutrients and insulating organs, it also converts into energy in the event that food sources are limited, or as fuel during rigorous exercise.

Body Fat Chart

Body Fat chart for Men

Men who maintain a healthy body fat range have an overall better quality of health and fitness.

Men with normal body fat have more toned muscles and this improves their appearance, they have a more efficient metabolism and therefore can maintain their body weight easier than men who have too much body fat.

Classification Men
Essential Fat 2% - 5%
Athletes 6% - 13%
Fitness 14% - 17%
Acceptable 18% - 24%
Obese 25% and more

Body fat percentage is influenced by age. Older men require more body fat to remain healthy.

Men between the ages of 20 to 29 should be considered to have normal body fat between 16% to 20%.

For men 30 to 39 the range is 19% to 22%, for men 40 to 49 the range is 21% to 24%, and 22% to 26% for men between 50 and 59. Men over 60 should have a 23% to 26% body fat percentage.

Body Fat Chart For Men

Body Fat chart for Women

Women increase their percentage body fat as they go through life, staying within a healthy fat range.

Women have a higher body fat percentage than men because it’s necessary for estrogen production and childbearing.

Women can have a body fat percentage 10% higher than a man of the same age who is of a healthy fat range and still be in their healthy body fat range.

They are inundated with information about weight loss, but they may not be aware of what a normal, healthy body fat percentage actually is (15%-30%). Here is the body fat chart for women:

Classification Women
Essential Fat 10% - 13%
Athletes 14% - 20%
Fitness 21% - 24%
Acceptable 25% - 31%
Obese 32% and more

Older women require more body fat to remain healthy.

Women between ages 18 and 40 should have body fat percentages between 20% and 30%, while women between 40 and 59 should have body fat percentages between 25% and 35% percent. Anything higher than 40% body fat is considered obese.

Body Fat Chart For Women