Body composition scanning is a useful, non-invasive way to measure how much fat, muscle and bone mass you have.
More comprehensive than a tape measure, scales (and your mirror), it can be a useful reference for fitness training, weight loss and for your overall health.
How it works
Body Composition scanning using Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) is considered one of the most reliable and accessible methods of screening.
Taking just a couple of seconds, electrodes in the foot sensor pads send a low, safe electrical signal through the body. Weight is calculated along with other readings including body fat percentage, muscle mass, metabolic age and visceral fat.
The majority of the population can’t feel it and results are available within minutes.
What the scan tells you
BIA scanning takes 11 full body measurements:
- Body Fat Percentage and Body Fat Mass
- Segmental Body Fat Percentages
- Muscle Mass
- Muscle mass score
- Total Body Water
- Bone Mass
- Physique Rating
- Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)
- Metabolic Age
- Body Mass Index Segmental
- Visceral Fat.
Tracking your fat and muscle mass in this way can help reach your fitness and nutrition goals more effectively.
For example, if your health goal is to increase muscle mass or track your strength training, a traditional scale may not show much improvement at all. However, a BIA body composition scan will show a decrease in body fat percentage and increased muscle mass, although your overall weight has stayed relatively the same.
Importantly the scanner measures how much visceral fat you have surrounding your essential organs. This can indicate how much weight you may need to lose (and how) to obtain a safe and optimal level of metabolic health.
If you are lean and run or play alot of sport, a low fat mass analysis may indicate you need to gain more body fat to maintain good joint health.
And if you have shoulder, hip, knee or ankle injuries it can show imbalances between your left and right side. This may indicate the need for unilateral or specific strength training to minimise the risk of further injury.
You can also get a Body Composition scan as past of your annual Health Check to review alongside your blood pressure, blood tests and other any testing conducted by your GP.
Who should get a Body Composition scan?
If you’re starting a new training program or seeking to make subtle changes to your body, and want to be accountable, you can do a scan every one to six months.
Otherwise if want to make significant changes to your body composition in the form of weight loss (or gain) or building muscle mass it’s recommended you get a scan each four weeks to track your progress and ensure your training and nutrition strategy is working.
This machine has just landed at Brellah Medical Centre and Movement HQ. Many of the staff here have been keen to get their own readings, including Dr Des who gives it the thumbs up.
How much does it cost?
- Initial Body Composition – COMPLIMENTARY
- Follow-up session – $45
- 2 follow-up sessions $80
Speak to your GP, PT, EP, or nutritionist for more information and also how a scan can help you effectively reach your goals.
At Brellah Health we use the Tanita Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA). This analysis is faster and less intrusive than many other means. The scanner is TGA approved, has only a 5% variation to a DEXA (X-Ray) scan, and is classified as a medical device. Tanita is recognised as the world leader in precision electronic scales within the medical, health and fitness market.
This article is for information purposes only. It does not constitute medical advice, is not tailored to your personal circumstances and you should seek your own medical advice from an independent medical professional with regards to what options are best for you.