Which is Better BMI or Body Composition?

BMI (Body Mass Index) and Body Composition Analysis have been used to measure your health for many years. As metrics, they determine if you are of a healthy weight depending on a number of factors. For BMI, this includes your height and weight. Body composition goes further into detail by looking at your body fat, muscle mass, bone and tissue. But, which is better – BMI or body composition? 

Body composition is better and more accurate than BMI. This is because body composition gives a more accurate insight into your body fat percentage, helping you to determine what you need to work on to be healthy. BMI can give a general overview of someone’s health but it’s not specific to the individual. 

Read on to learn more about body composition and BMI and how they can help you to better understand your health with Human Health Hub. 

Is Body Composition Analysis More Accurate than BMI?

Body composition analysis is more accurate than BMI. BMI only measures relative body weight and not the composition of your body. This means it doesn’t measure muscle mass, bone density or body fat. BMI is good for giving you an indication of what weight-related diseases you are at risk for but it’s more generalised than body composition analysis. 

Body composition analysis can determine if you have a high, medium or low body fat percentage. If you have a high body fat percentage, you will want to focus on decreasing the fat with targeted workouts. If you have a normal body fat percentage but your muscle mass is on the lower side, you can target this directly. 

What is Body Composition Analysis?

Body composition analysis is the breakdown of the human body into its individual components, including body fat mass, muscle mass, bone, tissue and water. This helps to determine what your level of health is so that you can assess what health risks you are facing and what need to do to reach a healthy body composition. 

What is BMI?

BMI, body mass index, is a measure that uses your height and weight to work out if you are of a healthy weight. The BMI calculation divides an adult’s weight in kilograms by their height in metres squared. However, it is important to note that this method is often considered to be flawed as it doesn’t take into account important factors such as body fat, muscle mass, tissue, bone density or water which make up a significant proportion of a person’s weight. 

How Do You Measure Body Composition?

Body composition can be measured in a number of different ways such as: 

  • Skin Callipers: Using a medical tool to measure your skinfold thickness in common areas where fat is found. 
  • Underwater Weighing: When you are submerged in water, your lean tissue sinks and body fat floats. This is used as an estimate of your body fat.
  • A Bod Pod: This machine measures how much air your body displaces and can estimate your body fat more easily than weighing yourself underwater.
  • Dual X-Ray Absorptiometry (DEXA) Scan: A DEXA scan is where low-level X-rays are used to find out how much body fat, muscle, and bone are in your body. 
  • Bioelectrical Impedance: This is a low-cost, noninvasive analysis that sends electrical currents through your body to measure your body composition. It’s done by measuring the speed at which the current travels through your body. 

How Do You Measure BMI?

You measure BMI by taking your weight in kilograms (or stone/pounds) and dividing it by the square of height in metres (or feet). Your BMI will then indicate whether you are under/overweight. BMI is split into different categories which are: 

BMIWeight Status
Below 18.5Underweight
18.5-24.9Healthy Weight
30.0 and OverObese

This can help to indicate to you if you need to adjust your lifestyle to reach a healthy BMI. 

What Are the Different Types of Body Composition and Examples?

The different types of Body Composition consist of anthropometric assessments of the body. This includes weight, stature and skinfold measurements. Other assessments are blood analysis and glucose monitoring. These assessments can help to determine if you are healthy. 

  • Weight: Your weight is measured by using a weighing scale. This process measures your overall body mass including bones, blood, organs and fat. This gives you an indication of how much you weigh overall. 
  • Stature: Your height, and stature, are taken using a stadiometer. This will give you an indication of your body’s proportions. Height can further indicate your nutritional status, access to healthcare and life expectancy. 
  • Skinfold Measurements: Skinfold analysis is the process of measuring body fat at 14 key sites across the body. These include triceps, biceps, subscapular, mid-axillary, pectoral, abdominal, supra-iliac, mid-thigh and calf. This process will help you to determine your body fat percentage across your whole body. 
  • Blood Analysis: Blood tests are conducted as they are a great indicator of your current health and can provide insight into your future health, including any risks. Your results can help tailor your goals to help you reach your peak performance. 
  • Glucose Monitoring: Continuous glucose monitoring is done so that you can recognise any factors that are influencing your glucose levels and therefore your stress levels. They are great markers for anyone experiencing stress-related disorders, thyroid issues, gut health issues and weight loss difficulties. This helps you to determine what plan you need to reach your fitness goals. 

The Science of Skinfold Measurement

Skinfold measurement is still relatively new, only being 20 years old, but it is a reliable practice to help with weight loss. Research shows that skinfold measurement is a key medical assessment used to analyse how body fat is distributed. It is highly accurate in adults and an important tool to maintain your health. 

Skinfold measurement can determine what areas of the body you need to target to reduce your body fat. By doing this, you can lessen the risk of diseases such as diabetes, heart disease, cancer and hypertension. Skinfold measurement is used to indicate your body’s composition and help you track how it changes as your health improves. 

Body Composition Analysis at Human Health Hub

Here at Human Health Hub, we offer Body Composition Analysis to provide insights into your current state of health, body fat levels and hormonal balance. We provide this as a part of a 360-degree package which supports you in the areas you need it most. 

Get in touch with us today for a free consultation and to find out more about the full-body composition packages we offer. 

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