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Best/Most Accurate Body Fat analyzer?

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  • #16
    Originally posted by RunBikeLift View Post
    Mirror doesn't work! haha I need numbers!! Gives the needed motivation!
    Actually...I recommend this scale.

    Amazon.com: EatSmart Precision GetFit Digital Body Fat Scale w/ 400 lb. Capacity & Auto Recognition Technology: Health & Personal Care

    The body fat measurement tool is NOT ACCURATE. It tells me I'm around 9% body fat. I'm really around 12% body fat. However, if you follow a similar lifting and eating schedule like I do, it's very useful as a PRECISION tool. For example, I eat cyclically. I eat low carb on specific days of the week, high carb on specific days of the week and follow a 7-day workout routine (I'm the guy with a notebook at the gym so I can track my progress and make sure my lifts are increasing). If I were to measure my "body fat" on a Saturday, which is a high carb day with lots of heavy lifting, and then on Wednesday, which is a low carb day I take off from the gym, the results would be totally useless because I would bloat from the water weight post-carb-up and it would throw off the numbers radically. However, if I weigh myself at 6pm every single Wednesday, the scale suddenly becomes very useful. I can take data points every Wednesday at 6pm and over 12 weeks would give me a very precise graph of my progress.

    If you adhere to a regular eating and exercise schedule like I do and eat "similar" meals, then this is a very inexpensive and useful tool. If you eat sporadically, have no regular exercise schedule and pretty much eat whatever you want casually within the PB, this wouldn't be quite as precise but still very useful. You would just have to plot a lot more data points over many weeks and your graph would have a lot of sporadic ups and downs, but over months it would give you a great idea of progress.

    I will say this: the scale itself is AWESOME. VERY ACCURATE. It's just the body fat analyzer that leaves a lot to be desired. If you care to track your results and plot them in Excel or something over months, then this will be useful in terms of precision.
    Don't put your trust in anyone on this forum, including me. You are the key to your own success.

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    • #17
      Just read about this method... the "Bod Pod", which uses "air displacement plethysmography". I might give it a try as it's local.
      Putting a percentage on body fat - Houston Chronicle
      -Chuck

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      • #18
        So I went over to University of Houston Clear Lake's Bod Pod this morning and got it done. Very quick and easy, and also supposedly very accurate. If you go to the Bod Pod's main site they have a search function which lets you find the ones in your area. Highly recommended!
        -Chuck

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        • #19
          I have had two different electrical impedance tools. (one hand held and one scale) neither were cheap.
          Both have huge swings in %. And just measuring at a specific time of the day, post meal, not post meal, whatever doesn't help for me.
          Every two months (or so) I do hydro static testing (dunk) - bodyfattest.com. While not as good as an autopsy, I'm willing to accept their inaccuracy. The electrical impedance one because demotivating because it much more measured my hydration level than anything else (and was wildly different than when I did a dunk on the same day)

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          • #20
            I use a Tanita scale. While I agree with what was said above about accuracy (there are swings, it is not as accurate as a dunk tank, a mirror is a better test, etc.) I find that the best way use the scale is to jot all the measures down (some have 6 or more outputs) and then enter them into Excel every once and awhile and graph the results - the visual gives you trends and may point to correlations relative to YOU. Seasonal changes, changes during menstrual cycles, signs of fatigue/overtraining and more can show up on the graph.

            To me, this is no different than other bio-markers: my resting HR today is just a number. Give me a month or two worth of resting HRs and I can do some real thinking and use that information in a useful way.

            If anyone wants me to send them a blank Excel spreadsheet and a tracking sheet, just PM me (forum doesn't allow for attaching Excel attachments).
            Kevin

            Human beings, by changing the inner attitudes of their minds, can change the outer aspects of their lives.
            William James
            US Pragmatist philosopher & psychologist (1842 1910)

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            • #21
              Originally posted by elliottsmith View Post
              Body calipers are the cheapest and most reliable way to measure body fat %. Depending on the system you use you can take 4+ measurements from your body, Tricep, Bicep, Waist and Back, total the measurements and refer to the graph that will come with the instruction manual.

              Job done. I've got scales, hand held things etc and I always come up as over weight with a % of about 24% on these. On calipers I come up about 16%, which is more accurate (at least that's what I tell myself anyway).
              I had my body fat done a few years ago with calipers and was 17-22%, look almost the same now as I did then but yeah the BIA scales are always a few %s higher.

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