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Wellness Glossary


A Body Shape Index (ABSI): See Body Shape Index (BSI). 


Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR): Basal Metabolic Rate is the amount of energy expended while at rest in a neutrally temperate environment, in the post-absorptive state. This requires the digestive system to be inactive (i.e. It required the subject to fast for about twelve hours).


Blood Pressure (BP): Blood pressure is the force of blood pushing against the walls of the arteries as the heart pumps blood. High blood pressure, sometimes called hypertension, happens when this force is too high.

  • Systolic Pressure: blood pressure when the heart beats while pumping blood.

  • Diastolic Pressure: blood pressure when the heart is at rest between beats.


Body Composition: Body composition is used to describe the percentages of fat, bone, water and muscle in human subjects. Because muscular tissue takes up less space in the body than fat tissue, body composition, as well as weight, determines leanness. Two people of same gender and body weight may look completely different from each other because they have a different body composition.


Body Fat: Body fat includes essential body fat and storage body fat. Essential body fat is necessary to maintain life and reproductive functions. The percentage of essential body fat for women is greater than that for men, due to the demands of childbearing and other hormonal functions. The percentage of essential fat is 2–5% in men, and 10–13% in women (referenced through NASM). Storage body fat consists of fat accumulation in adipose tissue, part of which protects internal organs in the chest and abdomen. The minimum recommended total body fat percentage exceeds the essential fat percentage value reported above.

A number of methods are available for determining body fat, such as underwater weighing, whole-body air displacement plethysmography, near-infrared interactance, dual energy X-ray absorptiometry, body average density measurement, bioelectrical impedance analysis, along with anthropometric methods such as skin folds (i.e. calipers).


Body Fat % (BFP): The body fat percentage of a human subject is the total body fat divided by total body mass.


Body Mass Index (BMI): The Body Mass Index  or Quetelet index is a value derived from the mass (weight) and height of an individual. The BMI is defined as the body mass divided by the square of the body height, and is universally expressed in units of kg/m2, resulting from mass in kilograms and height in meters. 

The BMI is an attempt to quantify the amount of tissue mass (muscle, fat, and bone) in an individual, and then categorize that person. Commonly accepted BMI ranges are underweight: under 18.5 kg/m2, normal weight: 18.5 to 25, overweight: 25 to 30, obese: over 30. 

>> Clinical Guidelines on the Identification, Evaluation, and Treatment of Overweight and Obesity in Adults.

>> Limitations of BMI.


Body Measurements: Body measurements are anthropometric measurements that are collected for the purposes of understanding human physical variation. These measures can be taken manually or with the help of a body scanner. Fitnescity collects measurements for the following body parts: waist, hips, biceps (R) and (L), thighs (R) and (L), along with calves (R) and (L). 


Body Volume Index (BVI): The Body Volume Index is a new measurement for obesity, proposed as an alternative and enhancement to the body mass index (BMI).

People of different age, gender or ethnicity will have different body shapes, with different weight distribution and recent studies have highlighted the limitations of BMI as an indicator of individual health risk.

A 10-year program of research and development has been undertaken; the Body Volume Index uses an algorithm based on MRI data and detailed Body Composition data to make an inference as to the body's distribution of weight and the distribution of muscle and fat.


Body Water: Body water is the water content of a human body that is contained in the tissues, the blood, the bones and elsewhere. The percentages of body water contained in various fluid compartments add up to total body water (TBW). This water makes up a significant fraction of the human body, both by weight and by volume. Ensuring the right amount of body water is part of fluid balance, an aspect of homeostasis.


Carbohydrates: Carbohydrates are one of the main types of nutrients. They are the most important source of energy for the body. The human digestive system changes carbohydrates into glucose (blood sugar). The body uses this sugar to provide energy for the cells, tissues and organs. It stores any extra sugar in the liver and muscles for when it is needed.

Carbohydrates are called simple or complex, depending on their chemical structure. Simple carbohydrates include sugars found naturally in foods such as fruits, vegetables, milk, and milk products. They also include sugars added during food processing and refining. Complex carbohydrates include whole grain breads and cereals, starchy vegetables and legumes. Many of the complex carbohydrates are good sources of fiber.


Ectomorph: An ectomorph has the body type that is most often seen in the pages of fashion magazines. They are slim boned, long limbed, lithe and have very little body fat and little muscle.

Ectomorphs tend to have delicately built bodies and find it difficult to gain weight or add muscle. Supermodels, ballerinas and basketball players most commonly fall into this group.


Endomorph: Endomorphs have a naturally "rounder" shape to their bodies, characterized by soft and undefined muscle tone. They tend to have a higher body fat percentage. Endomorphs gain weight easier than others and have greater difficulty losing weight.


Fast-Twitch: Fast-twitch muscle fibers can be further classified into (1) fast-twitch IIa - fast oxidative glycolytic, which use oxygen to help convert glycogen to ATP, and (2) fast-twitch type IIb - fast glycolytic, which rely on ATP stored in the muscle cell to generate energy.

Fast-twitch fibers have a high threshold and will be recruited or activated only when the force demands are greater than the slow-twitch fibers can meet. The larger fast-twitch fibers take a shorter time to reach peak force and can generate higher amounts of force than slow-twitch fibers. Strength and power training can increase the number of fast-twitch muscle fibers recruited for a specific movement. Fast-twitch fibers are responsible for the size and definition of a particular muscle.

Fast-twitch fibers can generate more force, but are quicker to fatigue when compared to slow-twitch fibers. Fast-twitch fibers are called “white fibers” because do not contain much blood; this gives them a lighter appearance than slow-twitch fibers. 


Fats: Fats are a type of macronutrient that the body gets from diet. It is essential to eat some fats, though it is also harmful to eat too many. Fats give the body energy that it needs to work properly. During exercise, the body uses calories from carbohydrates. But after some time, exercise then depends on calories from fat to keep the body going.

Fat is also essential for keeping the skin and hair healthy. Fat also helps the body absorb vitamins A, D, E, and K, the so-called fat-soluble vitamins. Fat fills fat cells and insulates the body to help keep it warm.

The fats that the body gets from food give it essential fatty acids called linoleic and linolenic acid. They are called "essential" because the body cannot make them itself, or work without them. The body needs them for brain development, controlling inflammation, and blood clotting.

Fat has nine calories per gram, while carbohydrates and protein each have four calories per gram.

All fats are made up of saturated and unsaturated fatty acids. Fats are called saturated or unsaturated depending on how much of each type of fatty acid they contain.


Functional Movement Screen: Functional movements are movements based on real-world situational biomechanics. They usually involve multi-planar, multi-joint movements which place demand on the body's core musculature and innervation.

Functional Movement Screen (FMS) is the screening tool used to identify limitations or asymmetries in seven fundamental movement patterns that are key to functional movement quality in individuals with no current pain complaint or known musculoskeletal injury.

These movement patterns are designed to provide observable performance of basic loco motor, manipulative and stabilizing movements by placing an individual in extreme positions where weaknesses and imbalances become noticeable if appropriate mobility and motor control is not utilized.


Genetic Weight [Refers to "genetic weight" as defined by 23andme]: Genetic weight aims at understanding how genetics influence weight. For instance, it could help indicate whether an individual's genes predispose them to weigh more or less then average. 23andme determines genetic weight was by looking at DNA variants associated with weight based on the company's research. The analysis also takes into accounts that some variants have a stronger effect on weight than others. Because of this, the proportion of higher to lower weight variants may not exactly align with the individual's overall predisposition. Other variants such as lifestyle and environment might have just as much impact, if not more.


Heart Rate: Heart rate is the speed of the heartbeat measured by the number of contractions of the heart per minute (bpm). The heart rate can vary according to the body's physical needs, including the need to absorb oxygen and excrete carbon dioxide. It is usually equal or close to the pulse measured at any peripheral point. Activities that can provoke change include physical exercise, sleep, anxiety, stress, illness, and ingestion of drugs.

Many texts cite the normal resting adult human heart rate range from 60–100 bpm. Tachycardia is a fast heart rate, defined as above 100 bpm at rest. Bradycardia is a slow heart rate, defined as below 60 bpm at rest. Several studies, as well as expert consensus indicates that the normal resting adult heart rate is probably closer to a range between 50–90 bpm. During sleep a slow heartbeat with rates around 40–50 bpm is common and is considered normal. When the heart is not beating in a regular pattern, this is referred to as an arrhythmia. Abnormalities of heart rate sometimes indicate disease.


Hip Circumference: Fitnescity uses the hip circumference to measure the waist-to-hip ratio (i.e. the waist circumference divided by the hip circumference). An increase in waist-to-hip ratio is associated with increased disease risk.  Fitnescity’s method for measuring waist circumference is based on the World Health Organization STEPS protocol. Itinstructs that the measurement be made at the widest part of the hips.



Lean Mass:





Muscle Composition (Genetic Profile):

Personalized Wellness:

Postural Analysis:



Resting Heart Rate:

Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR): The Resting Metabolic Rate is the rate at which the body burns energy when it is at complete rest. It indicates the number of calories the body needs to perform basic functions like breathing and circulation. The RMR is part of the individual's total daily energy expenditure (TDEE) or the total number of calories the body burns each day.

The term basal metabolic rate (BMR) is often confused and/or interchanged with RMR or resting energy expenditure (REE). However, BMR measurements must meet total physiological equilibrium whereas RMR conditions of measurement can be altered and defined by the contextual limitations. Therefore, BMR is measured in the elusive "perfect" steady state, whereas RMR measurement is more accessible and more commonly used. 


Saturated Fat and Weight (Genetic Profile):



Surface-Based Body Shape Index (SBSI): The Surface-based Body Shape Index was proposed by West Virginia University computer scientists Syed Ashiqur Rahman and Donald Adjeroh as an alternative to BMI (Surface-Based Body Shape Index and Its Relationship with All-Cause Mortality).

The study examined data on 11,808 subjects from the National Health and Human Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES) 1999–2004. The study concluded that SBSI outperformed BMI, waist circumference, and A Body Shape Index (ABSI) as a predictor of all-cause mortality. However, the study did not specify the recommended healthy ranges for SBSI.


Three-Dimensional Body Scan:


Visceral Fat: Visceral fat or abdominal fat (also known as organ fat or intra-abdominal fat) is located inside the abdominal cavity, packed between the organs (stomach, liver, intestines, kidneys, etc.). Visceral fat is different from subcutaneous fat underneath the skin, and intramuscular fat interspersed in skeletal muscles. Fat in the lower body, as in thighs and buttocks, is subcutaneous and is not consistently spaced tissue, whereas fat in the abdomen is mostly visceral and semi-fluid. Visceral fat is composed of several adipose depots, including mesenteric, epididymal white adipose tissue (EWAT), and perirenal depots. Visceral fat is often expressed in terms of its area in cm2 (VFA, visceral fat area).

An excess of visceral fat is known as central obesity, or "belly fat", in which the abdomen protrudes excessively and new developments such as the Body Volume Index (BVI) are specifically designed to measure abdominal volume and abdominal fat. Excess visceral fat is also linked to type 2 diabetes, insulin resistance, inflammatory diseases, and other obesity-related diseases.


Waist Circumference: Abdominal fat mass (referred to as abdominal, central or visceral obesity) can vary considerably within a narrow range of total body fat and body mass index (BMI). As a result, waist circumference should be used as an additional measure of body fat distribution, and as an indicator of potential heath risks. 

An increase in waist circumference (as a measure of abdominal obesity) is associated with increased disease risk.  

Fitnescity’s method for measuring waist circumference is based on the World Health Organization STEPS protocol. It instructs that the measurement be made at the approximate midpoint between the lower margin of the last palpable rib and the top of the iliac crest.


Waist-to-Hip Ratio (WHR): The waist-to-hip ratio is defined as the waist circumference divided by the hip circumference. An increase in waist-to-hip ratio is associated with increased disease risk. 

The ratio provides an additional measure of body fat distribution and heath risks. It can also be measured more precisely than skin folds.  

The World Health Organization states that abdominal obesity is defined as a waist–hip ratio above 0.90 for males and above 0.85 for females, or a body mass index (BMI) above 30.0. The National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK) states that women with waist–hip ratios of more than 0.8, and men with more than 1.0, are at increased health risk because of their fat distribution.