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Have you heard about body scans that can give information about your body density and body composition? These are very clever machines that can measure your body fat, muscle and bone strength. A DEXA scan (dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry) uses x-ray technology to determine the distribution of lean muscle, fat, water and bone in your body.
How does it work?
The Body Composition Scan:
It all takes about 7 minutes! Two safe and very low dose x-ray beams at differing energy levels is being used during the scanning process. The amount of radiation that passes through the tissue is measured by a detector. The computer then determines how much of your tissue is muscle fat water or bone and where it’s all stored.
What information will you get with the Body Composition Scan?
The overall body fat, muscle and bone weight on the scan photos showing you all your body fat and muscle (also broken down into percentages). All the measurement information will be also given to you in breakdowns for both legs, arms and your torso. Information about your visceral fat (the dangerous fat around organs).
The Bone Density Scan:
Again, in a matter of a 10-20 minutes, lying on the scanning bed, you’ll be asked to use a foam block to capture your hip in different positions.
What information will you get with the Bone Density Scan?
This test can tell you how strong your bones are. It is commonly used to identify osteoporosis, a condition that causes a decrease in the density of bones resulting in fragility, and to determine a person’s risk for developing fractures.
Who can benefit from these?
Anybody, really! They are both great for getting a baseline measurement of fat, muscle, and bone lets you see where you are and track changes over time. They are however especially benefiting for people who
Are on a weight loss journey:
An initial baseline scan lets you see exactly where you are when you start, and then track how much body fat they are actually losing, and how much muscle you are gaining.
Athletes, fitness enthusiasts and body builders:
As well as using a DEXA Scan for basic body fat measurement, athletes often use the scan to pick up muscle asymmetries between their left and right sides, so this can be picked up and corrected on time with the help of the scan. Learn what works for your body, and help dial-in your routine and your macros.
People older than 65 years or women during menopause:
Bone density decreases over time as we age. This is why it’s important to do strength training, weight bearing exercise and to include enough calcium and vitamin D in your diet. Women are more prone to osteoporosis than men and statistically being asian or caucasian also puts you at higher risk.