How do Scales Measure Body Fat?

How do Scales Measure Body Fat?

We’re all worried for our health as well as about the way we look. Obviously, perfection is hard to reach regardless of what type of lifestyle you lead as long as you don’t try to keep a close eye on your health stats. One of the key stats that you must always supervise is the percentage of fat in your body. What this percentage indicates directly impact your health, well-being, and ultimately the way you look. Nowadays, it’s easier than ever to track the body fat percentage in your body as we have modern scales that provide the data in an instant. scales deliver accurate measurements of body fat percentage as well as other important stats, including your weight, body mass index or BMI, muscle mass, bone mass, total body water, and so on. But are they really worth the investment? Do they actually work as promised? Find out what’s the technology used in the development of the scales that allows them to get a clear reading of this health stat, and learn more about them by reading the rest of the article.

The Principle Behind the Scales

The technology that is used in the manufacturing of these scales and that allows them to get accurate data regarding the levels of fat in your body is bioelectrical impedance analysis or BIA. What the BIA technology does is that it sends an electrical signal throughout your body, using the time that it takes for the signal to travel from your leg, across the pelvis, and down on the other leg in order to establish how much fat is in your body. The principle is that the signal will travel faster through water than it will through fat, so the more fat there is in your body, the longer it will take for it to reach the end of the route.

Accuracy and Reliability

Are body fat scales actually reliable? Is their accuracy good enough for you to confidently go with what they display? The answer depends solely on the quality of the product that you choose. As long as the scale uses bioelectrical impedance analysis and it comes from a trustworthy manufacturer, featuring other important functions that will aid you to supervise your health, then yes, it is reliable enough for you to guide yourself after the readings that it provides.

Importance of Body Fat Percentage Awareness

Unfortunately, many people wrongly associate the term ‘body fat’ with obesity or an unhealthy constitution. Yes, it’s true that high body fat content has a severe impact on your health, but a certain percentage is needed in the body for various metabolic and structural functions to work properly. The fat is produced in the body as a result of the absorption of fats that reside in the food that you consume. When the fats are broken down in the body two byproducts result, more precisely fatty acids and glycerol. The role of fatty acids is to provide energy for major tissues, and the role of glycerol is to be processed by the liver into glucose, being stored for later use as an energy stock.

Body Fat Functions

As we have already mentioned, body fat shouldn’t completely be looked upon as being bad as, when it’s within normal parameters, it plays a highly important role in the proper functioning of the human body. Here are the major functions that the fats in your body accomplish:

  • Skin and hair health maintenance;
  • Proper functioning of cells;
  • Maintaining an optimal body temperature;
  • Immunity booster;
  • Aid in proper vitamin absorption;
  • Cushioning effect on tissues and organs.

Why Is Too Much Body Fat Undesirable?

Although it’s true that a certain level of body fat is required for the proper functioning of the body, too much fat can lead to serious health issues. Thus, you must be careful and maintain a proper balance from this point of view. The accumulation of body fat that doesn’t get burned off leads to the appearance of obesity, a health and aesthetic issue that triggers severe problems such as heart disease, breathing difficulties, and arthritis.

Healthy Body Fat Parameters

To prevent any issues that accompany high fat levels in the body, you must do drastic changes to your lifestyle, especially when it comes to what you eat and how much you exercise. Ideally, body fat should constitute 21-24 percent of the total weight in the case of women, and in the case of men, it should constitute 14-17 percent of their total weight. Guide yourself after these parameters to stay out of harm’s way and ensure a good overall health.

Other Methods to Accurately Measure Body Fat

Using a body fat analyzer isn’t the sole method to turn to in order to find out how much fat resides in your body. There are other techniques to turn to; one of the most popular is to measure the fat with special skinfold calipers. Another effective but very expensive method is to visit a clinic where you will undergo tests from a doctor, tests that involve the use of full body scans. Nonetheless, the scale is still the most convenient method to use as you can get the reading at any hour of the night or day without having to leave the comfort of your home. Additionally, the accuracy of these devices is undeniable, so there’s no need to search for other body fat measurement techniques.