DEXA Body Composition

DEXA BCA is the International Gold Standard for Body Composition Assessment. This is the most accurate and precise test on the market. DEXA has such a high level of accuracy because it uses low dose x-ray technology. The DEXA machine scans your whole body measuring not only your total amount of fat, muscle and bone, but the breakdown of exactly where these tissues are distributed (right down to a tenth of a gram).

The number on the scales does not give you the complete picture. People are often confuse their weight loss with muscle loss which can impact on health. A DEXA BCA tells you what you are actually made up of which helps you develop realistic health and fitness goals. We look at your fat stores, muscle health and bone health – each of which are equally important in achieving optimal vitality and performance. A DEXA BCA is vital in assessing the impact of your nutrition, exercise, medical condition management and rehabilitation. This is a good way to assess whether your nutrition and exercise plan is actually working for you and getting the results you are after. Our technology is able to accommodate clients up to 200kg.

Test Preparation

The day before your scan you need to:

  • Fast overnight & morning of scan – No food/fluids after dinner (min 8 hours), no breakfast and definitely no morning coffee/fluids.
  • Be adequately hydrated – 1 to 2 glasses of water with each meal and snack the day before will ensure you are adequately hydrated & remember, no fluids the morning of the scan (see fasting above).
  • Do NOT exercise the day before (preferable) and day of your scan.
  • Ensure adequate carbohydrate intake the day before your scan (A low carbohydrate diet, recently reduced carbohydrate intake or heavy training session the day prior can increase the risk of depleted muscle glycogen stores. This can make your measured muscle mass lower than what it actually is.)

The day of the scan you need to:

  • Wear clothing that doesn’t have any metal (zips, hooks, buttons or details) – gowns are available.
  • Empty your bladder before the scan.

Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) Testing

Have you ever wondered what the speed of your metabolism is? Or perhaps why you seem to be doing absolutely everything but can’t seem to lose fat or gain muscle? Our RMR test investigates all the above. Using this information, we can calculate exactly how much energy your body needs whether it be for fat loss, weight maintenance, muscle growth, sporting performance or management of medical conditions. It takes the guesswork out of knowing what your body requires. It can help highlight why you are plateauing or provide evidence to explain why you may not reach your goals because of other underlying issues. The same way the DEXA BCA helps you set goals, the RMR test helps guide you on what you need to be doing from a nutrition standpoint to reach those goals. We recommend the DEXA BCA and RMR test be performed together. Using this information, a Dietitian

Test Preparation

  • The day before your scan you need to:
  • Fast overnight & morning of scan – No food/fluids after dinner (min 8 hours), no breakfast and absolutely no morning coffee/fluids.
  • Be adequately hydrated – 1 to 2 glasses of water with each meal and snack the day before will ensure you are adequately hydrated & remember, no fluids the morning of the scan (see fasting above)
  • Do NOT exercise the day before (preferable) and day of your scan.
  • Fast as per the DEXA scan (above).
  • No smoking or chewing gum the morning of the test.
  • No exercise the morning of the test.
  • Arrive in a rested state – preferably straight up in the morning.

VO2 Testing

This test is suitable for those who want to improve their health profile, fitness and/or sporting performance. The VO2 test measures your aerobic fitness. The DEXA BCA and RMR tests will only get you so far. Nutrition and exercise are not mutually exclusive. Both are integral to fat loss, optimum fitness, health and sporting performance.

The VO2 test fills in this other side of the equation – what you need to target from an exercise standpoint. This test tells you your rate rate training zones for exercise to maximise fat loss and gains in fitness, sporting performance and health. It ensures that when you exercise you are working at the specific intensities your body needs to get the results you want. There is nothing worse than training hard and not seeing results. It ensures you get the most bang for your buck our of your training and reduces your risk of overuse, fatigue and injury.

Test Preparation

  • Wear suitable exercise clothing including enclosed running shoes.
  • Bring your water bottle & a towel (a water cooler is available)
  • Bring medications you require during exercise e.g. asthma puffer.
  • We recommended you have your last meal 2-3 hours before the test and a light snack 1 hour before the test if required – it is recommended these meals/snacks include a source of carbohydrate.
  • Avoid participating in any heavy exercise before the test.

Why is the preparation so important?

We want to provide you with the most accurate baseline results possible. Our suggested preparations are those recommended for elite athletes at the Australian Institute of Sport and based on the latest research. For DEXA scans your stomach contents, hydration status and muscle glycogen stores can all change the accuracy of the muscle mass measured during your scan by up to 1.5kg. This ultimately impacts your calculated body fat percentage. These research findings are true for all DEXA machines.

For Resting Metabolic Rate (RMR) test findings to be accurate the preparation protocols need to be closely followed. Testing your RMR later in the day, or in a non-fasted state will not give a true Resting Metabolic Rate. We also understand that there may be situations (medical or otherwise) where you may not be able to complete all aspects of the preparation. Please notate your variations to the standard preparation so that you can replicate the same conditions for subsequent tests thereby optimising your comparative results.