How Can You Tell If Your Body Has Extra Fat Or Loose Skin

When you lose a substantial amount of weight, there is much to be gained. You could feel like you have more energy, or perhaps, you've gained more confidence. The benefits of getting into a healthy weight range are a pleasure to enjoy. There is one surprising gain that isn't quite as positive, though. We're talking about excess skin.

When discussing extreme weight loss, Dr. John Fischer, an assistant professor of surgery and director of the clinical research program at the University of Pennsylvania Health System, reveals a rather unwelcome side effect. "You are going to have laxity and excess skin folds, which leads to functional issues such as the skin getting in the way during exercise and activities," he says. Adding, "It can lead to wound issues" (per Today).

Excess skin can definitely get in the way and lead to some unexpected health issues. However, before you start the research needed to find out what you can do about this issue, you need to determine first if the problem you are dealing with is, in fact, extra loose skin and not extra fat.

There are a few ways to determine if it's loose skin or extra fat

Whether you are dealing with excess skin or extra fat, take a breath and congratulate yourself on how hard you have worked to get to a healthier version of yourself. Both issues can be frustrating, but luckily, there are a few questions you can ask to get to the root of what it is that you are dealing with. If you're dealing with a layer of stubborn fat, your skin may appear saggy, but not wrinkled. It could also likely be excess fat if you have a BMI higher than 9-10% if you're male and about 17-18% if you're female. On the other hand, it might be loose if the surface of the skin you are grabbing is wrinkled. If it appears untaught as you hold it up to investigate, it is likely loose skin (via BeLiteWeight).

Again, don't lose sight of the fact that you've taken the steps needed to improve your health. In fact, losing even 5% to 10% of your body weight can make a dramatic improvement in your overall health (perĀ Obesity Action Coalition). If you are bothered by your loose skin or excess fat, consider consulting with your doctor to discuss various treatment options.