New Year, New Tools for Health Assessment

Jan 8, 2018

There are a lot of different tools designed to monitor fitness. From the low tech-scale and body mass index (BMI) calculations, to the high tech dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry (DXA) body scan, which is designed to measure body fat and more.

In this hour of Talk of Iowa, host Charity Nebbe explores an aspect of physical health that many people examine this time of year. With new goals for fitness or weight loss, she talks about fitness assessments new and old.

Brianne Sanchez recently underwent the DXA body scan and she shares her experience. Assistant Professor in Health and Human Physiology at University of Iowa Kara Whitaker gives her perspective on this assessment and about how we should examine ourselves.

"When a lot of people think about fitness they think about how someone looks versus their cardiovascular health—or what's on the inside—[it's important to get] away from looking at aesthetics and more thinking about health and assessing how you feel as compared with how you look," Whitaker says.

She says that wearable technologies to monitor exercise and body scan information are not essential for making goals for better health, but they can be useful getting a baseline of numbers to try to improve.