Post # 1
about a month ago i got my body fat percentage done at a wellness clinic at work. It was 20.5% which I was pretty happy with.
I got it tested tonight at a new fitness center I’m going to and it was 23%. In the last month I haven’t had any major diet changes and I’ve been increasing my workouts, which include weights and interval training.
I’m wondering if there’s some “normal” fluctuations in body fat, and if 2.5% is a lot to be a “fluctuation”?
Oh both assessments used BIA- one was a scale and the other was the thing you hold with your hands.
Post # 3
Did you work out before you used it tonight at the fitness center? I think sometimes your blood flow can interfere with its accuracy, and it’s recommended you measure at a resting HR and whatnot.
I also know that the BI machines can be pretty inaccurate in general, which may explain the variation. Or maybe one wasn’t calibrated correctly. If you’re really interested, maybe you can have it assessed with calipers? I’m suprised the wellness clinic didn’t use the calipers, actually.
Post # 4
I feel like that is a lot to fluctuate. I think it might be because you used different types of scales each time you measured…
Post # 5
@futuremrs1986: Your body fat percentage can fluctuate for a lot of different reasons, like how hydrated you are and what time of month it is. I wouldn’t get too worried about it since you’re doing everything the way you always do!
Post # 6
Thanks for the feedback. Tonight it was measured right after my workout, which I’ve read can influence it. They were also measured at different times of day (afternoon vs. evening). I guess I’m just wondering if that’s too much of a fluctuation to be considered random?
I’m not too worried about it, I feel a lot better since amping up my routine, and really that’s what matters!!
Post # 7
I have a body fat calculator. It fluctuates about 1-2% weekly. I usually use it once a week in the morning right before breakfast.
Post # 8
@futuremrs1986: I’ve also heard that those machines which use electric currents don’t give reliable readings because results can vary based on lots of factors (including things like whether you’ve just drunk a glass of water or something), and of course the machines aren’t calibrated. Calipers are a more effective way to track.
Post # 9
@futuremrs1986: everything the PPs said, but also those machines are like scales. They aren’t always the same. It’s best to try to stick with the same calculation equipment if you want most accurate results. Otherwise, I’d say it’s nothing to worry about.
Post # 10
Has anyone done it with callipers?
Post # 11
@kaylee26: I’ve done it with calipers, and the person who was doing it literally told me as she was measuring me that it’s incredibly ineffective/inconsistent.
I’ve heard the only real way to do it is something with water?
Post # 12
@futuremrs1986: I’m going to echo some of the pps and say that you shouldn’t worry too much about the difference between the two measures since the equipment you were using was different. I know for a fact that the hand held one is very easy to get weird readings on depending on your hydration level. I agree with @cece_intheuk
@kaylee26: I’ve had my body fat taken several times over the past few years with the calipers. My husband was a kinesiology major in college and took a class about how to do it. The calculations are extremely accurate and I’ve never doubted the results he’s gotten for me. They’re painful, but effective. He says he doesn’t trust any other body fat measurements as much as he trusts the calipers.
Post # 13
@futuremrs1986: BIA isn’t terribly accurate (no matter what my trainer claims). The ones with both hand and foot plates are marginally better than one or the other, but neither really gives a accurate reading.
I weigh in every morning on a scale with hand and foot plates (trainer’s orders) and my percentage can fluctuate by 2-4% in a day.