Wednesday, May 16, 2012

How Do You Measure Body Fat?

Health enthusiasts are adept in many ways of keeping their bodies fit and well. Their main priority is to ensure that their bodies are healthy as this would help them avoid being affected by different illnesses. One of the major considerations of health enthusiasts is the amount of fat their bodies contain.

Fats are needed by your body mainly to serve as energy reserves for your daily activities. They also help in the digestion and absorption of certain vitamins as well as in the promotion of healthy skin and hair. But of course, as in most substances present in your body, too much fat can be detrimental. They can cause various diseases, particularly in the heart and the entire circulatory system. This is why you have to be sure that you have just the right amount of fat in your body. To do this, you can engage in a few methods in measuring body fat.

Probably the most common method that is recommended in most medical institutions is the use of a DEXA scan. The Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry scan, although rather expensive, enables the measurement of three different compartments: 1) total body mineral; 2) soft lean mass; and 3) fat tissue mass. The scan would also determine how fat is divided among the different parts of your body so it would help you check which has the most fats in it and engage in proper diet.

Another way that you can use to measure your body fat is through the U.S. Navy or the anthropometric method. You can do this with a simple cloth tape measure. In this method, you measure the circumferences of your waist, neck, height and hips. Waist measurements are for the men while hips measurements are for the women. Estimate body fat percentages are the results of this method.

Finally, you can use the skin fold method. The tool for this method is called the skin fold caliper, a pair of tongs that has a ruled measuring scale in between. The calipers gather skin and take the corresponding measurement through the scale. You can use this at any time but it is suggested that you do so with a medical professional and gathering the same amount of skin in one particular part of your body only.

You should give body fat measurements great consideration to ensure that you maximize your health potential through the times. Ask your trusted doctor about the effects of body fats and ask for solution too.

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