The BIA Body Composition Analyzer is a system for expert use in analyzing body composition, hydration and nutritional status. Body composition is the amount of lean body mass and fat that makes up total body weight. Lean body mass includes the bones, body cell mass (BCM), water, connective and organ tissues. Fat mass is the amount of stored lipids and consists of subcutaneous fat and visceral fat.
Body cell mass (BCM) as a component of lean mass is the most active metabolizing compartment of the body and one of the most important keys to determine a subject’s nutritional status. Extracellular mass (ECM), another component of lean mass, contains all the metabolically inactive parts of the body, including extracellular water (ECW). Intra- and extracellular water are the two components of total body water (TBW). In healthy individuals these two fluid compartments are tightly regulated. It has been shown that intra-cellular hydration (ICW) is an important regulator for protein catabolism. An increase in extracellular water may indicate disturbance in the cellular membranes and is a typical sign of malnutrition.
The Bio-Impedance-Analysis technique (BIA) is a proven method for determining many factors of the body composition in a simple, non-invasive and cost-effective manner. The principles of BIA utilize the fact that bones, organs and fat have different electrical conductivity. The Body Composition Analyzer used at med. BodyForming Mannheim is the Body Explorer Monitoring System from Juwell Medical, a highly refined device applying this principle of BIA.
Body fluids are excellent electrical conductors, while most other body cells are good capacitors, due to their lipoprotein layer in the membrane. Fat is a good electrical insulator, as it is essentially non-conductive. The BIA device measures the electrical resistance and two other parameters (phase angle and reactance). Further data required by the software for this system include age, height, weight and gender of the individual.
The actual measurement takes roughly five minutes, and requires the client to lie down with electrodes placed on one hand and one foot. The results are then processed by the software and a three page report in English or other languages is generated. The specialist at med. BodyForming Mannheim discusses the results with the client and uses them as a basis for planning treatments and designing an appropriate nutrition plan and fitness program.
Use and Results
The BIA Analysis is extremely useful to determine the nutritional status, the amount of body fat, the lean mass and the distribution of lean mass in metabolically active cells (BCM) and relatively inactive parts (i.e. bones, connective tissue, fluids).
When used in conjunction with the MedContour Bodyforming Program or other weight loss programs, repeated BIA analyses determine the amount of body fat reduced over time and other important health-related changes. Documentation of the progress is available graphically, demonstrating how much of the weight changes are due to changes in total body water, lean mass and body fat.
Athletes can use BIA to determine whether their nutritional status is good and whether their vitality level remains high during hard physical training phases.