The Body Fat Level Needed for 6-Pack Abs
Many people want to lose fat because they want to have six-pack abs. Actually, they want to reduce the amount of fat on their bellies so their abs become visible. And they know the only real way to reduce abdominal fat is to get rid of overall body fat.
This begs the question, “What do you have to get your body fat percentage down to before your abdominal muscles will show?” The answer is, “it depends.” More specifically, it depends on your gender and genes.
Women naturally have a higher body fat percentage than men. A woman doesn’t need to reduce her body fat as far as a man does for her abs to be visible. Even worse for guys is the fact that men tend to store a higher percentage of their total body fat around their bellies. So a male has to push his body fat percentage way down before his abs pop into view.
Your genes affect the way locations where fat is stored on your body. For some blessed people, any excess body fat is stored evenly around their body. But for most of us, it seems that every ounce of extra fat goes right to their belly or butt. This means that two people whose abs are clearly visible may have body fat percentages that differ a good bit.
There aren’t any good tests around that will tell you exactly what percentage you would need to achieve yourself to have six-pack abs. The only way to find out is to try and see what happens. You need to keep pushing your body fat percentage down until your abs are visible.
Ok, ok. I’ll stop beating around the bush and tell you what fat percentage you need to reach to achieve six-pack abs. As you just saw, there are a few factors that affect things, so the best I can do is give you a range of percentages taken from a range of sources. If you want your abs to be obvious, you’ll need to hit a body fat percentage somewhere in the following ranges:
Men: To make your entire 6-pack of abdominal muscles visible, you’ll need to get your body fat percentage down to less than 11%. If you get it down below 8%, you’surely going to have a clearly visible 6 pack.
Women: For your abs to be clearly visible, you have to get your body fat level down to something less than 17%. Taking it below 14% would be better still. These are higher numbers than the guys have to hit, but remember that you naturally have a higher percentage of body fat, so your job is just as tough as for men do.
Getting down to the necessary body fat percentage won’t be easy, but it isn’t impossible. Depending on whose results you use, the average American male has a body fat percentage of between 17 and 26% while the average American female is carrying somewhere between 22 and 36%.
You have your work cut out for you, so make sure you pick a solid program and stick with it