Body composition tells you how much of your weight is made up of fat, how much is muscle, and how much is fluid. A high percentage of body fat increases your risk for obesity, diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol and other illnesses.

The body is composed of water, protein, minerals and fat. A two-component model of body composition divides the body into a fat component and fat-free component. Body fat is the most variable constituent of the body. The total amount of body fat consists of essential fat and storage fat.

We use bioelectrical impedence to assess body composition and make recommendations on how to achieve optimal body weight and muscle and fat mass. We recommend semi-annual measurements be done, and often quarterly measurements when clients are involved in fat loss or muscle building programs.

Minimum body fat recommendations:

  • Men: 3-6%
  • Women: 12-15%

Average body fat:

  • Men: 15-20 %
  • Women: 24-28%

Health practitioners universally agree that too much body fat is a serious health risk. Problems such as hypertension, elevated blood lipids (fats and cholesterol), diabetes mellitus, cardiovascular disease, respiratory dysfunction, sleep apnea, arthritis, gall bladder disease, autoimmune diseases, and most all types of cancer are all related to obesity.

Also, research suggests that excessive accumulation of fat at specific body sites may be an important health risk factor (Wilmore, Buskirk, DiGirolamo, & Lohman, 1986). For instance, it appears that extra fat around the abdomen and waist is associated with higher risk of diabetes, heart disease and hyperlipidemia, and form what is commonly known as “metabolic syndrome” or “dysmetabolic syndrome X”. Overweight individuals also have higher incidence of arthritis, sleep apnea, and cancers, and typically die earlier than normal weight individuals.

Individuals who accumulate a lot of fat around the waist (apple-shaped) are worse off than those who tend to accumulate fat in the thighs and buttocks (pear-shaped). The apple-shaped pattern of fat deposition is more commonly seen in men; whereas women tend to be pear-shaped.