What is it?
It is a measure of your body fat and fat free mass
(including muscle, bone, skin and water)
Why it is useful to know?
-It provides a more accurate measure of your Basal Metabolic Rate – assisting in determine the calorie intake needed to lose weight.
-It can be used to determine your metabolic age and relative fitness
-It is a more accurate measure of your body fat. Using BMI can be misleading and can over or under estimate your fat stores.
-It can be useful to determine a target weight goal. It is important to lose fat but preserve muscle.
-During any rapid weight loss phase it can provide accurate information on fat loss and confirm muscle preservation
Body Fat Percent for Men and Women
How Can it be measured?
1. Bio – Impedance
This is the most common way to measure. A small current is through your body and the resistance to to the current can give a ball park figure of muscle percentage
Advantages – easily available, relatively cheap and quick to perform
Disadvantages – results can vary a lot and accuracy is low as readings can be affected by your hydration status.
2. Air or Water displacement (BodPod or Hydrostatic Weighing)
Measures air displacement (Bod pod chamber) or water displacement (underwater tank) to calculate fat percentage.
Disadvantages – Not easily available (hospitals and tertiary centres), inconvenient, need to undress to minimum clothes and may be expensive
Advantages – Very accurate
3. DEXA Body Composition Scanning
A very small dose of radiation (Xray) passes through the body allowing the assessment of fat and muscle mass. You are fully clothed and lie on a table. There is a weight limit depending on the scanner of 160kg-180kg.
Disadvantages – Relatively expensive, Small dose of Radiation (Xray), weight limit applies.
Advantages- Very accurate, More easily available than Bod Pod, Convenient and quick to do and doesn’t require undressing. Will provide information about your bone density at the same time,
At Elina weight loss clinic we can arrange referrals for both DEXA Body Scan and BodPod body composition assessment. DEXA and Bod Pod are the gold standard options and provide the most accurate way to determine your Basal metabolic rate, your muscle mass and Fat percentage to assist in determining your weight loss gaols and assist in monitoring muscle mass when participating in our rapid weight loss program.