When it comes to fitness, at times your doctor or fitness advisor may ask you to measure your body fat. Make sure you pay attention to the fact that this is not your weight in kilograms or pounds but your body fat percentage.
Your body weight cannot be measured with your bathroom scale because it cannot differentiate between fat and muscle. Nor can you rely on parameters like BMI. If you are serious about your fitness journey or about losing those extra kilos, you need deeper insights into markers like:
- Bone, muscle, and fat percentage
- Details about your body composition
All About DEXA Scan : Insights by one of the leading scan centres in Chennai
The acronym DEXA scan means Dual Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry. This diagnostic device’s prime function is to help measure:
- Bone mass
- Bone density
- Visceral fat
- Body composition
- Muscle imbalance (for limb comparison)
- Total lean mass
The original purpose of the DEXA scan, however, was to assess bone density. The device is now used for more than just medical reasons. Sportspersons and gymming enthusiasts use it to know their body fat and muscle composition.
What makes the DEXA different from other diagnostic tests? The DEXA delivers more accurate body fat analysis results since it relies on FMI or Fat Mass Index rather than BMI or Body Mass Index.
BMI analyses your body fat based on your height and weight, whereas FMI analyses more factors like:
Body Composition & DEXA Scan: What is the Connection?
One of the biggest benefits of the DEXA scan is helping experts understand your body composition when doing a whole body fat analysis. By definition, body composition refers to how your body mass or weight is distributed between three body compartments:
- Adipose tissue or fat tissue
- Extracellular water or the water outside the cells
- Fat-free tissue or lean body mass
The best way to understand your body weight distribution is to take your body composition measurements. Only these parameters can help body fitness experts understand your:
- Health or fitness status
- Changes in body composition, such as increase or decrease in body fat and muscles.
These details are crucial in helping devise the perfect nutrition and lifestyle plan to improve your overall body fitness and health.
DEXA Scans: How Do They Work & What Do They Reveal?
The DEXA scan sends two low-dose X-rays into your body during the procedure. The bones, soft tissues, muscles, and fat in your body absorb these X-rays differently. The highlight of a DEXA scan is its ability to precisely differentiate between these various compositions in your body. In contrast to body weight and BMI, a body composition analysis with a DEXA scan provides a more comprehensive picture of your health and body composition.
A DEXA scan result will help you understand:
- The distribution of body fat.
- Your body’s total lean mass.
- Ratio of Android: Gynoid fat ( This ratio is a vital health parameter. An ideal ratio is less android fat around your torso and more in your hips or quads).
- Imbalances in muscle mass distribution. ( To refine your training and make more room for injury prevention.)
- Bone density to track your bone strength and prevent or manage Osteoporosis.
- Health risks including excess visceral fat, which can cause Type 2 Diabetes, cardiac diseases, and other health issues.
DEXA Scan & its Role in Your Weight Loss & Fitness Journey
You will be surprised to know how a DEXA scan can help refine your weight loss goals. Using your DEXA scan report, your fitness expert or doctor can understand the following details:
- Types of fat in your body.
- Bone mass percentage
- Lean muscle percentage
- Body composition
- Potential health risks
- Effectiveness of dieting and exercise
- Progress in your weight loss journey
Using these results, your fitness expert can customise your weight loss program. For example, if your results show low muscle mass and high body fat, you can focus on strength training and a low-calorie diet to achieve your fitness goals.
The scan also clearly highlights excess fat you can target during workouts. It can measure and compare both halves of your body, allowing you to track muscle imbalance and prevent overuse or injuries to your body muscles.
Above all, the best reason for getting a DEXA scan is its support for better health. It helps identify and prevent potential health risks. You can monitor changes in your body composition over time to ensure you progress towards your fitness and health goals.
DEXA Scan: A Better Way to A Fitter Body
Apart from using it for medical purposes, you can discuss your DEXA scan results with a well-trained and knowledgeable personal trainer or nutritionist to customise your fitness journey. Also, having multiple scans (three or four) per year will accurately show if you are progressing or not. Your DEXA scan results can motivate you to lose all the unwanted kilos and maintain a fitter, healthier body.
If you are serious about your fitness journey, book your appointment for a DEXA scan at Anderson Diagnostics, one of the leading scan centres in Chennai. Our DEXA scan results can accurately highlight your body composition and other vital details with which you can create a personalised health journey that aligns with your body.