What Does Your Scale Really Know?
Written By: Tieraona Low Dog, M.D., Chief Medical Officer, Well & Being
Tracking weight loss and monitoring your health using your bathroom scale can be tricky. That’s because the scale tells you how much your skin, blood, organs, bones and tissues weigh. It cannot distinguish between fat and non-fatty tissue. Weight fluctuates between 1 to 3 pounds throughout the day due to variety of reasons. For example, you might retain water due to salt intake or medication use, which would result in an increase in bodyweight on the scale but has nothing to do with changes inbody fat. And that is what most of us really want to know,how much of my weight is due to fat?
So if the scale doesn't accurately reflect body fat, what does? In 1990, the National Institute of Health provided a grant to develop a method to accurately measure body composition, and in 1994, the BOD POD was introduced. The BOD POD uses air displacement technology to assess body composition, and after scientific testing for accuracy, reliability and ease-of-use, the BOD POD is considered by researchers to be the “gold standard” for body composition assessment.
The BOD POD can determine the percent fat and fat-free mass in both adults and children by having the individual sit inside the BOD POD for two 50-second increments of air measurement. These measurements are then used to calculate your body composition. It only takes about 5 minutes to complete the assessment, which makes it extremely simple and comfortable. The test results are instantaneous, and research studies show that the BOD POD is very precise. Other methods such as skinfold calipers, bioelectric impedance, and DEXA scans are far less accurate.
Knowing your body composition can be a crucial tool in your pursuit of good health. It can also help design an exercise program that works for you. I’ve had patients spend 45 minutes running on a treadmill three times a week and still come in at 26% body fat. When they switch over to resistance training, they watch their lean muscle increase and body fat drop. If you’re interested in upping your game and fitness level, I strongly encourage you to make the BOD POD part of your strategy!
Start your new body plan today. Visit one of our Well & Being destinations in Scottsdale, AZ or Dallas, TX to experience the Bod Pod!