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Bodyfat Measurement: Resistance

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Old 06-06-2006, 12:46 PM   #1
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Bodyfat Measurement: Resistance

We've all seen the Tanita scales and various devices that claim to measure bodyfat percentage by electrical resistance.
The theory is that fat has a higher resistance to the flow of electricity than muscle and water. Probably so.

I;ve never had a great deal of faith in these things because I have always assumed that electricity will take the line of least resistance, the moist surface of the skin.

I decided to test one of these gadgets.

OK: My gym has a sexy looking OMRON model that is V-shaped and you hold one arm of the V in each hand.

You then input your activity level: athlete or normal

I have often wondered why the scales and devices needed all this input...just MEASURE the resistance already!

Results showed me, a tall man, at a pretty muscular 202, "normal" activity and a "tender" age. I ran the results and I got a consistent 21.4% I ran it again, carefully drying my hands: 21.4%

Okay...I changed a couple perameters and made myself "athlete" and 10 years younger.
Results: Bodyfat percent: 15.4%

So what this tells me is there is a computer chip which spits out averages and measures NOTHING. My electrical resistance, height, sex, and weight remained the same...and so did my bodyfat.

Basically I could have handed the "measuring handles" to an obese woman and she would have gotten the same results.

Conclusion: the machine is no better than finding a formula and plugging in your numbers. Actually, a formula that includes waist size would probably be far BETTER than this silly machine.

Last edited by Lenin; 06-06-2006 at 12:55 PM.

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