Body Composition Analysis Explained
You’ve probably heard of a “body composition analysis,” or BCA, but what exactly does it mean? Why does it matter?
Body composition analysis involves a series of tests to measure the ratio of different tissues that comprises our bodies. These tests can provide crucial information, potentially revealing the following: the ratio of fat to lean muscle tissue, the percentage of water in the body, the metabolic rate (BMR), and BMI. When muscle tissue increases through proper exercise and nutrition, all of these numbers change for the better! At Simple Wellness, this is exciting for us, because it shows our clients that their focus on making changes is really worth the effort. It’s a quantifiable number, and our patients can watch it improve!
So what’s BMI?
BMI, or body mass index, represents one of the most common and most misused metrics of all. BMI is a measure of a person’s weight relative to his or her height. It multiplies the person’s weight in pounds (or kilograms) times 703 and divides this number by their height in inches (or meters).
However, BMI on its own can’t tell you too much since it doesn’t distinguish between muscle and fat. An extremely fit person’s BMI may tell them they are obese (since muscle adds weight), while an elderly person, with little muscle and a high fat percentage, may get a BMI in the “normal” range. Of course, theoretically, the higher your BMI score, the higher percentage of your body weight is fat, but that’s not reliable, as we just discussed. Even more than the visual impact of high body fat percentage, however, is the physiological impact of it on your health, as disease may arise when your body composition takes a downturn.
Are you in the normal range?
Determining lean body mass is another form of body composition analysis. Lean body mass is simply the portion of your body’s weight that is not fat. This includes any non-fat tissue, muscle and bone.
Healthy women should generally have a lean body mass of between 79 and 86 percent of their body weight. Healthy women between the ages of 30 and 50 should have a lean body mass between 77 and 85 percent of their total body mass, while healthy women over the age of 50 should have a lean body mass between 75 and 84 percent of their total body mass.
Meanwhile, healthy men’s lean body mass should generally be between 85 and 91 percent of their body weight. Those between 30 and 50 years old should have a lean body mass between 83 and 89 percent, while those over 50 should have a lean body mass between 81 and 88 percent of their total body mass.
Our Proprietary Technology
You can probably guess that all of that analysis takes some fancy equipment to assure accuracy and consistency. One of our treatment protocols includes a state-of-the-art, full-body composition analysis machine. Not only is it capable of all the measurements we have spoken about—and more—but it also creates an easy-to-understand report showing your vital statistics in one sheet. It gives us the ability to measure progress before and on a monthly basis during your time with us to prove that you are making progress towards your health goals. We find that it also motivates and excites our clients to be more aware of their habits and propel them forward with our guidance.