Body composition test

Patients whose weight is within the normal range face fewer health risks. The body composition test allows the person’s health condition to be evaluated and determines if they are underweight or overweight, which is associated with higher health risks.

The test results can be used for recommendations concerning the patient’s dietary pattern and exercise routine.

The body composition test can only be done as a part of a health examination package or a sports nutritionist appointment.

The body composition test determines the following:

  • Body mass index i.e. BMI = weight (kg)/ height squared m² (the reference BMI range for adult non-athletes is 19–24.9)
  • Basal metabolic rate per 24 hours i.e. BMR
  • Measured body fat percentage of the total body weight (the reference range for men is 10-20%; for women, 20-30%)
  • Body fat mass in kilograms
  • Fat free mass, which includes the mass of muscles, connective tissue, water and other fat free tissue, i.e. FFM
  • Total body water mass in kilograms i.e. TBW – the reference range for men is 50–65% of the total body weight, and for women, 45–60%. With age, the total body water mass decreases; this value is also lower in people with higher body fat percentage.

The body composition test uses the method known as bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA). It is based on the relation between body volume and electrical impedance. The BIA method is fast, safe and painless. The person stands barefoot on a specially designed scale for about 20 seconds, and the electric current that cannot be felt passes through the body.

For more precise results, this test should not be performed immediately after a workout, after eating or drinking a large amount of fluid. Useful information can be obtained by means of repeated body composition tests.