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How the Body Stores Fat

Learn how your body stores fat in this Howcast video.


When you eat food, all food has calories. Calorie is a unit of energy, so when you eat food digestion begins in your stomach and then your intestines, and your body absorbs the nutrients that it needs in to your bloodstream. Throughout the day, your body will use those calories to help everyday functions of your heart, your lung, your brain, and even just going about your daily life.

Whatever excess calories are not used can then be stored as fat. One place that the body stores fat is in your liver. So if you've ever had an ultrasound or a CAT scan, someone might have told you that you have a fatty liver. Another place that your body stores fat is just centrally, in your abdomen. This is called the omentum, that's the fat that encases our organs.

We all have that, but people have different amounts of fat depending on how much weight they're carrying, and that's actually the dangerous kind of fat, the kind that's found centrally. Other people store their fat, maybe lower in their bodies, in their hips, in their thighs. This is referred to as gynecoid obesity.

So while there's different ways that the body stores fat, in order to determine if the amount of fat that you're storing is excessive and that it puts you at increased health risk, you might want to calculate your BMI or your body mass index.

And that's the number that takes your weight and your height and forms a ratio, and helps you decide if you fall in to the obese category. A BMI of 30 or greater is considered obese and puts you at increased health risks. So these are just a few ways of how your body stores excess fat.

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