The body fat percentage of a person is the total weight of fat divided by total weight; body fat includes essential body fat and storage body fat. Essential body fat is necessary to maintain life and reproductive functions. The percentage of essential body fat for women is greater than that for men, due to the demands of childbearing and other hormonal functions. The percentage of essential
fat is 3–5% in men, and 10-16% in women.

American Council on Exercise recommends the following percentages:

For Females
Essential fat-->10–13%
Athletes-->14–20%
Fitness-->21–24%
Average-->25–31%
Obese-->32%+

For Males
Essential fat---> 2–5%
Athletes-->6–13%
Fitness-->14–17%
Average-->18–24%
Obese-->25%