Lived in the Philippines for several years and gotta say most people not living in a big city like Manila were lean but definately not ripped. The lean states were due more to lack of nutrition than anything else.
As far as maintaining 3% body fat, not really realistic. Even the Body builders I knew would maintain around 6-8% and cut down
as much as possible for contests. As soon as the contest was over they quickly raised they're body fat. 3% is the absolute minimum the human body requires before it will start to shut down. I personally find 8-10 relatively sustainable regardless of exercise level, but wholly dependent on being focused on diet. Muscle mass will be determined by my exercise type and level.
Thanks. I think that's a much more realistic view of what I was talking about. It's not like I go around with calipers testing everyone I see on the street, haha.
Originally Posted by Mini_mi
And most of the methods for prediction vary widely. Like I said, DEXA scans seem to predict double the other methods, so I really am convinced that going by body fat percentage can be useless, going by feel and the mirror might be a better way.
The only real thing I can say is that I do see a lot of very lean people around. And the bodybuilders don't seem to have too much trouble leaning out either. If you maintain 6-8% yearly, which you should already have a six pack and is also phenomenal compared to american standards, it isn't going to be that hard to cut down further than that because you don't have much to go.
I guess my main point of my initial statement is, it's not as hard to be lean as people in the USA typically think. Sure, it is hard when you're eating cookies and cup cakes all the time, but not when you're eating simple foods. And while I don't see people dying in the streets, yes they can afford to eat enough to live, but just not enough to make them fat.
I think that seems about right. I'm sure you could go lower and still be healthy. But I guess in case of emergency you wouldn't want to go too low, such as less than 6%, which is quite rare anyways.
Originally Posted by Gorbag