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DEXA Scan – Bone Health and Body Composition

DEXA Scan – Bone Health and Body Composition

#AD – Bone health isn’t something I talk about on a day to day basis with family and friends. It’s funny. Diet, weight and fitness crop up a lot but it is mainly something I would talk about in a professional sense as a dietitian at work. Bone health is of course very important to avoid any issues when ageing. The most obvious ones being osteoporosis and osteopenia. As a dietitian I would advise my patients to ensure where possible they are consuming enough calcium in their diets, as well as monitoring their Vitamin D intake (many need supplementation, especially in the winter months). Vitamin D facilitates the absorption of calcium. We also encourage weight-bearing physical activity where possible and some of our patients are offered a DEXA Scan.

If your bone health is something that interests or concerns you, DEXA Scan can offer you a scan to assess your bone density, as well as your body composition if you are starting a new fitness programme and tracking your progress. You will be able to see what your body fat and muscle mass is for example.

What is a Dexa Scan?

A Dexa scan uses x-ray technology to find out the distribution of lean muscle, fat, water and bone in your body. It passes two safe, very low dose x-ray beams at differing energy levels through the body tissues. The amount of radiation that passes through the tissue is measured by a detector and it is determined how much tissue is muscle fat water or bone and where it’s all stored.

Bone Health

If you are keen to assess your bone health via checking your bone mineral density. It is done using your spine, hips or forearm usually. You may be eligible for one and this would be covered by your health insurance, if you have this. Your GP can then refer.

The scan takes between 10 and 20 minutes.

You will be given two results afterwards which you will be able to discuss:

T score: This number shows your Bone Mineral Density compared to young adults of the same gender in peak health.

Z score: This number shows your Bone Mineral Density compared to other people in your age group of the same size and gender. If this score is more than 2 standard deviations above or below average, it may indicate a need for further medical tests.

dexa scan

Body Composition

If you would like to see what you body composition is, this is in an even shorter scan, at around 7 minutes. To book you can simply look for your closest DEXA Scan location and book an appointment.

A DEXA scan gives a precise measurement, which is more accurate than bioimpendence scales or a tape measure. It also tracks dangerous visceral fat around your vital organs. Muscle asymmetry can lead to injury so knowing this could help with physiotherapy and training.

The results you will get include:

  • Total body bone mineral density
  • Total body muscle mass
  • Total body fat mass
  • Total body bone mass
  • Total body fat percentage
  • Muscle and fat mass in the trunk
  • Muscle and fat mass in your right and left arm
  • Muscle and fat mass in your right and left leg
  • Central abdominal fat measurement

Therefore, if you are embarking on a fitness plan, you will be able to track changes and progress, if you have repeat scans. This could be really useful if you are planning on losing weight or training, like a body builder or are just curious!

Where Can you have a Dexa Scan?

Dexa Scan is found In the USA, the UK, Australia and New Zealand and you can find one closest to you and book an appointment.

A DEXA Scan isa really useful too in assessing your bone health and will allow you to address any issues if needs be. Assessing your body composition may allow you to make positive changes to your diet and fitness regime and help you keep on track.

If it sounds interesting to you, give DEXA Scan a try.

Disclosure – this is a sponsored post.


1 Comment

  1. January 21, 2020 / 7:03 am

    Great article. I learned a lot from your content because it helps me a lot about body scan and body compositions. All the topics you mentioned above are very well explained.