What is a BIA? (and why do you need one?)

Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis or Bioimpedance Analysis (BIA) is a method of assessing your "body composition" - the measurement of body fat in relation to lean body mass. It is an integral part of health and nutrition assessment.

Improving your BIA measurement by lowering your percentage of unhealthy body fat can help reduce risk to a variety of serious health conditions.

Why is my body composition important to my health?

Research has shown that body composition is directly related to health. A normal balance of body fat is associated with good health and longevity. Excess fat in relation to lean body mass, a condition known as altered body composition, can greatly increase your risks to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and more. BIA fosters early detection of an improper balance in your body composition, which allows for earlier intervention and prevention. BIA also provides a measurement of fluid and body mass that can be critical assessment tool for you current state of health.

BIA also serves to measure your progress as you work to improve your health. Improving your BIA measurement or maintaining a healthy BIA measurement can help keep your body functioning properly for healthy aging and reduced risk to illness. With your BIA results, we can recommend a personalized dietary plan, nutritional supplements, and exercise to help you support optimal health and well being for a lifetime.

How does a BIA Work?

BIA is much more sophisticated than your bathroom scale, but just as painless- and almost as quick. BIA is a simple procedure that can be performed right in our office in a matter of minutes with the help of a sophisticated, computerized analysis.

This analyzer "calculates" your tissue and fluid compartments using an imperceptible electrical current passed through pads placed on one hand and foot as you lie comfortably clothed on an exam table. In just minutes, we will have very accurate measurements to help create an effective, personalized program to improve your health status.

Body Composition Testing

Bio-impedance analysis (BIA) is a reliable method of measuring body composition, including percentage of body fat and lean body mass. Measurements are taken with a bio-impedance analyzer, which uses electrodes similar to EKG electrodes. The machine passes a harmless, ultra-low level electrical current through the body. Lean tissue, which is over 70% water, is a good conductor of electrical current. Fatty tissue low in water is not. Thus, the resistance to the flow of electrical current measured by the analyzer can be used to calculate body composition

Participants will need to remove their right shoe and sock. The electrodes are place on the right hand and food while the individual is lying down on an exam table. This whole procedure takes only a few minutes and a computer prints out the results. Optimal body fat ranges from 12%-25% for women and 5%-20% for men.

Over 100 independent studies, conducted by researchers over the past 20 years, have demonstrated that bioimpedance analysis can provide an accurate and clinically useful assessment of body composition. However, for the most accurate results, the following guidelines should be followed:

  1. Do not eat for 4 hours prior to your test.
  2. Do not exercise for 12 hours prior to your test.
  3. Do not consume alcohol for 24 hours prior to your test.
  4. Come well hydrated. Drink at least 2-4 glasses of water 1-2 hours before the test (you may void as needed).
  5. Do not drink any caffeine the day of your test.
  6. Do not wear pantyhose/stockings from which one foot cannot be removed.

Please follow these guidelines for your next visit.

BIA testing will not be performed on clients, who are pregnant, have implantable electronic device(s), or who have been diagnosed with heart problems.