Body Fat: Benefits and Risks

Your body fat is a highly specialized organ, critically important for your health and longevity.

The cycle of making, breaking, storing, and mobilizing fats is at the core of how we regulate our energy.  Fats also help the body stockpile certain nutrients as well. The so-called "fat-soluble" vitamins—A, D, E, and K—are stored in the liver and in fatty tissues.

Different types of body fat also regulate the temperatures of your individual organs as well as your overall body.

Too much body fat can lead to risks like cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and other health problems but if your body fat drops too low, it can also have health consequences, just as when your body fat is too high.

There are two types of fat in your body. 

Non-fat mass - also known as essential fat. Non-fat mass is found in your bones, liver, kidneys, intestines, and muscles. Fat in these places is required for your body to function normally. 

Fat mass - also known as stored fat is located in your adipose tissue. Fat mass is used as energy for your body. It insulates and cushions your body. It surrounds your organs and is just under your skin. 

Women naturally have a higher body fat mass than men, and their body fat will also naturally increase as they age. 

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