Body Composition scanning is probably the most exciting development in natural health management in the last 5 years. It specifically shows where fat is distributed throughout the body, and allows for a more scientific approach to targeted weight management.

In addition, it shows how much muscle you have and whether there are weaknesses in your body that can be addressed through a specialised exercise plan.

We now have the pleasure of adding Body Composition scanning to our expertise at Hormone Health. With our trained sonographer and specialist dietician, Nigel Denby (link), we can offer you state of the art strategies to manage weight and fitness. Together with Nigel, you will devise a bespoke, personally tailored eating, activity and exercise plan which will increase your Fat Free Mass. Your metabolism will work more efficiently, your body shape will change and your ability to maintain your weight loss will improve. Body Composition scanning allows you to see real, measurable changes in your body as you progress towards your goals.

What is Body Mass Composition Analysis?

The body is made up of organs (heart, lungs etc), fat, muscle, bone and fluids.

Body Mass Composition analysis looks at the proportion and distribution of fat and muscle throughout the body. It will also differentiate between the sub-cutaneous fat, ie just under the skin and visceral fat, which surrounds the body’s organs.

Why is body mass composition analysis useful?

The differentiation between the 2 types of fat is important as the visceral fat is associated with a higher risk of:

  • Heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • Some cancers

Sub-cutaneous fat can add to an individual’s health risk, by increasing overall body weight, as well as influencing our external appearance. However, it is a well-known scenario that appearance may not define our overall health risk, as slim people may have a high level of visceral fat and hence a higher risk of long-term disease.

Body mass composition will also analyse the health of the muscles, as well as the bones.

As the analysis shows a picture of the whole body, we can identify specific areas for concern.

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What will the results show?

Body Fat mass and distribution will allow us to assess any health risk and determine the most suitable dietary and exercise plan to achieve your goals.

Muscle analysis will enable us to identify any areas of muscle ‘weakness’ and hence determine a tailored exercise plan to address those particular muscles.

If, the bones have been analysed, then the risk of osteoporosis will be determined and again a suitable dietary or medicinal approach can be worked out.

How else are DEXA scans useful?

DEXA scans are often used to diagnose or assess someone’s risk of osteoporosis, a condition that weakens bones and increases the risk of breakage.

You may need to have a DEXA scan if you’re:

  • over 50 years of age with a risk of developing osteoporosis
  • under 50 with other risk factors – such as early menopause, smoking, a previous fracture, family history of osteoporosis

How often can one have a scan?

Scans can only be performed every 8 weeks (maximum 6 per year), due to the need to avoid over-exposure to X-rays.

What will happen during the consultation?

  • You will be asked to undress and wear a medical gown, then to lie down on the DEXA machine table
  • The analysis will take around 4 minutes and then you can put your own clothes back on
  • We will then sit down with you and go through the results and offer advice to address any health issues that may have been identified
  • If there is a long-term plan of action, then you may wish to book in for a package of scans to monitor your progress.

We may also refer you to TEN Clinical, who provide bespoke, specialist, clinically proven and highly effective physical exercise sessions within a welcoming, inclusive and empowering boutique environment.

Pricing

Body composition scan – £250

Consultation – £295

Terminology

DEXA – Dual Energy X-ray Absorptiometry

The DEXA machine uses low frequency (safe) x-rays to analyse the body’s composition. Its most frequent use has been to assess bone density, but now it can be used to measure an individual’s metabolism and body composition (muscle and fat). Link to DEXA section of website https://hormonehealth.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2018/08/HH-DEXA-DL-leaflet-JAN2018.pdf

Metabolism – is the term used for the way that the cells in the body use food and convert it into useful energy to maintain the body’s functions.

Metabolic rate or Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) are terms used to measure an individual’s metabolism.

RMR describes the energy (calories) required to maintain basic functions at rest, eg keeping the heart pumping, the brain working etc

Body Mass – is the weight of the body, but is often expressed as Body Mass Index (BMI). The BMI relates body weight to height and is often used as a measure for a healthy weight. It can be misleading, as it does not distinguish between subcutaneous and visceral fat.

Sub-cutaneous fat is the fat just under the skin, which you are able to pinch. Whilst this may not be regarded as attractive, when one looks in a mirror, it is not necessarily unhealthy.

Visceral or Visceral Adipose fat (VAF) is fat that is ‘wrapped’ around the organs of the body (eg heart, kidneys, liver). This fat is very unhelpful and carries a higher risk of developing heart disease, diabetes and even some cancers.

Lean Body Mass (LBM) – is the difference between the total body weight and the weight of the body fat.

Lean Body Mass Index (LBMi) – relates the LBM to one’s height.