DEXA Body Composition Scanning
UNDERSTANDING DEXA TECHNOLOGY
The gold standard for accurate, comprehensive body fat analysis
Dual Energy X-Ray Absorptiometry (DEXA / DXA) is widely regarded as one of the most proven and reliable technologies for measuring body composition. DEXA technology provides comprehensive, precise measurements of total body fat percentage, along with segmental body fat distribution in regions such as arms, legs, android (waist) and gynoid (hips).
The DEXA scan can be used to obtain an initial body composition assessment and to understand how the body is changing over time – i.e. how much the lean and fat tissue changes over time, therefore measuring the impact of training or dietary programs.
DEXA's body composition capabilities can also measure the visceral fat content in the android (waist) region. Abdominal, or visceral, fat is of particular concern because it's a key player in a variety of health problems — much more so than subcutaneous fat, the kind you can grasp with your hand. Visceral fat, on the other hand, lies out of reach, deep within the abdominal cavity, where it pads the spaces between our abdominal organs. Last but not least, DEXA provides additional results on bone density.
Precise comparison with individuals in the same age and ethnic group
TOTAL BODY FAT PERCENTAGE PERCENTILE CHART
DEXA is the only body composition analysis tool that uses a large-scale database of population scans to compare your results with people who are similar to you. For instance, you can use Fitnescity's "Total Body Fat Percentage Percentile Chart" above to compare your results with individuals with a similar age, gender and ethnicity.
The chart is based on the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), which collected large-scale data on whole body DXA scans of participants age 8 years and older to provide nationally representative data on body composition. The study also collected data to study the association between body composition and other health conditions and risk factors, such as cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, and activity and dietary patterns.
Fitnescity's "Total Body Fat Percentage Percentile Chart" presents body composition data from whole body DXA scans for individuals who participated in the 1999–2004 NHANES. Measures for the total body and regions of the body also include total mass, fat mass, percentage fat, lean soft tissue (excluding bone mineral content), and fat-free mass (including bone mineral content).
How to use the chart
1- Select your gender and ethnicity/race using the dropdown bar at the top of the chart. Identify your age group and your body fat percentage on the chart.
2- Identify the point where your x and y axis intersect. Depending on what color it falls under, you will be in one of the percentiles (5th, 10th, 15th, 25th, 50th, 75th, 85th, 90th and 95th).
3- Your percentile will indicate the percentage of people who are similar to you and who have a lower body fat percentage.
For instance, if you are in the 25th percentile, this means that 25% of individuals who have the same gender, ethnicity and age as you have a lower body fat percentage. The lowest percentiles are typically found in elite athletes, while the highest ones are associated with very high body fat risk.