The 10 Best Body Fat Monitors

Updated August 31, 2017 by Quincy Miller

10 Best Body Fat Monitors
Best High-End
Best Mid-Range
Best Inexpensive
We spent 43 hours on research, videography, and editing, to review the top choices for this wiki. Regardless of which horrific numbers scales have exposed you to over the years, their most dastardly trick may have actually been the number they hid: your body fat percentage. After all, this is what truly matters, as who cares how much you weigh if you've got a six-pack? Luckily, these monitors will tell you the real, unvarnished truth -- and knowing is half the battle. When users buy our independently chosen editorial picks, we may earn commissions to support our work. Skip to the best body fat monitor on Amazon.

10. Omron HBF-306C

Designed to utilize a proven bioelectrical impedance scanning method, the ultra-portable Omron HBF-306C displays accurate statistics while on the go. It's great for keeping in a gym bag, or if you don't want a full-sized scale taking up space in your bathroom.
  • quick response time
  • excellent for personal trainers
  • can't use it if you have a pacemaker
Brand Omron
Model HBF-306CN
Weight 15.2 ounces
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

9. Sequoia Fitness TrimCal 4000

Don't let the fancy name fool you -- the Sequoia Fitness TrimCal 4000 is a very simple device that's also exceedingly accurate. There's no need to worry if you don't know how to use it, either, as it comes with clear instructions and a helpful body composition chart.
  • measures to the nearest millimeter
  • doesn't pinch skin painfully
  • made of flimsy plastic
Brand TrimCal 4000
Model pending
Weight 8 ounces
Rating 3.6 / 5.0

8. GoWise USA GW22025

The GoWise USA GW22025 is a great option for the weekend warrior who's looking to get the most out of their body. It features a unique "athlete mode" that takes into account higher levels of activity, giving you more personalized results and recommendations.
  • good for tracking trends
  • easy to program user profiles
  • runs through batteries quickly
Brand GoWISE USA
Model GW22025
Weight 4.8 pounds
Rating 4.1 / 5.0

7. WiTscale S220

The WiTscale S220 sends info to Bluetooth-enabled devices, letting you track your goals and monitor your progress from anywhere. Its body fat readings are usually pretty accurate, but it does tend to add a few pounds to the scale, so adjust accordingly.
  • app is easy to install
  • comes with batteries
  • doesn't pair well with iphones
Brand WiT
Model S220
Weight 4.6 pounds
Rating 4.2 / 5.0

6. Ozeri Touch ZB13-W2

The Ozeri Touch ZB13-W2 is great for families, as it has a feature called the Infant Tare Button which is designed for letting you weigh your baby, pet, or luggage while you hold them. It also allows for tracking 8 unique fat profiles, but not for kids under 10 years old.
  • can measure in different units
  • glass is impact-resistant
  • touch-sensitive buttons are buggy
Brand Ozeri
Model ZB13-W2
Weight 5.8 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

5. Withings Body

The Withings Body is like having a personal trainer permanently waiting on you, as it gives a myriad of health analyses while tracking progress with graphs that display your trends. It also lets you set goals and even rewards you upon achieving them.
  • syncs automatically via wifi
  • provides weather forecasts as well
  • readings tend to fluctuate
Brand Withings
Model WBS05_03
Weight 6.2 pounds
Rating 4.3 / 5.0

4. Tanita BF679W

Not content with just telling you how much body fat you carry, the Tanita BF679W also lets you know your water percentage as well. This makes it ideal for anyone who tends to retain fluid, or for athletes who often need to cut weight to qualify for competitions.
  • compares stats to prior readings
  • is consistent on different surfaces
  • supports 2 different profiles
Brand Tanita
Model BF 679W
Weight 6.4 pounds
Rating 3.9 / 5.0

3. InLife Precision

The InLife Precision gives you many of the same functions and capabilities of some of the top-end models, but at a price that's much lighter on the wallet. This is largely due to the plastic construction on the bottom, which also makes it more durable.
  • shows readings quickly
  • very bright display
  • can support up to 400 lbs
Brand INLIFE
Model FS4
Weight 4.4 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

2. Tanita BC554 Ironman

If you want to know every little thing that's going on inside your body, get the Tanita BC554 Ironman. It's loaded with features, including BMI readings, metabolic age, bone mass, and perhaps most distressingly, it will actually rate your physique.
  • easy-to-read lcd screen
  • tells how to maintain current weight
  • helps you stay properly hydrated
Brand Tanita
Model BC554
Weight 7.8 pounds
Rating 4.7 / 5.0

1. Lange Skinfold Caliper

Despite all the advances in technology, sometimes the old ways are still best, and the Lange Skinfold Caliper gives the most accurate readings you'll find anywhere. This is a must-have for doctors, fitness professionals, and anyone determined to get a 6-pack.
  • will last for years
  • spring doesn't snap shut forcefully
  • comes with instructions and case
Brand Lange
Model C-130
Weight 1.3 pounds
Rating 4.8 / 5.0

Who Needs A Body Fat Monitor?

The government-recommended traditional assessments for body mass are very broad, and do not offer the kind of accurate results that many people want. They are designed more for the statistically average person rather than the actual individual. Things like waist circumference and body mass index can point a person in the right direction, but if they truly care about their body fat percentage, they will use a body fat monitor.

Many athletes use body fat monitors to keep within their optimum levels. These optimum levels are largely determined by where their peak performance range is. For instance, endurance athletes have a lower body fat number, as their focus is on lean muscle and a light frame. Olympic weightlifters will have a higher BMI, as their focus is more on strong mass over lean muscle. Body fat monitors may also be used by physically fit individuals looking to perfect their diet and exercise routine and stay at their physical peak.

People looking to lose weight will often find a body fat monitor inspiring. A traditional weight scale shows only a person’s weight. This can be disheartening, as a new workout routine is likely to cause no change at first as the body adjusts to the new routine. Even though the body is creating more muscle fibers and burning fat stores, looking at an unchanged number on the scale is enough to make some people quit.

The scale will eventually show the positive effects of a workout routine and diet plan, but it can be difficult to stay inspired at first. On the other hand, a body fat monitor gives the user a picture of their fat to weight ratio in real time. Less fat means more progress towards body mass goals, regardless of overall weight at the outset. Regularly checking a body fat monitor can give these users a sense of progress towards their goals.

Different Types Of Body Fat Monitors

Body fat monitors can vary from simple to extremely elaborate. Likewise the results they give may vary from a general range to an extremely accurate number. Most consumer body fat monitors are meant to give a person the near-precise range of their body fat percentage, as results may vary depending on a few different factors. There are multiple types of fat monitors. Handheld body fat monitors are devices with electrodes for each hand. These use bioelectrical impedance to determine body fat in relation to lean mass. This technology is also found in advanced floor scales that can give the user an idea of body fat percentage, weight, and even bone mass. Skin calipers are the most common method of measuring body fat. These devices are used to pinch the tissue in key areas of the body. The thickness at each site is recorded and used to determine levels of body fat in these areas, which gives an idea of body fat percentage on the whole.

Doctors may use more elaborate body fat monitors to get their results, which means the information they collect is usually very accurate. Doctors may check for a patient’s body fat using a process called hydrodensitometry. The process is based on Archimedes’ principle of buoyancy. The patient is first weighed normally using an office scale. They are then lowered into a small tank of water using a chair that will emerge their entire body in water. The amount of water displaced helps determine body density and fat content.

Doctors may also use an air displacement plethysmograph to determine body composition. The patient sits inside an egg-shaped chamber during the test. The machine then measures the volume of the person by how much air they force out of the plethysmograph. ADP is based on much the same equation as hydrodensitometry, but adjusts for air displacement rather than water displacement.

Doctors may also request special forms of imaging tests to help determine body mass and body fat percentage. Dual energy x-ray absorptiometry is a specialized x-ray that helps determine the ratio between muscle, bones, and fat within the body. Body fat can be estimated using more familiar imaging tests, like CT scans and MRI, as well. These scans create the best picture of the inside of the body and give the most accurate readings of body fat. They are also very expensive, and are generally not used to simply measure body fat.

Is Body Fat Monitoring Important?

Using a body fat monitor as a way to track body fat percentage is an important aspect of health, as body fat has a direct impact on overall well-being. Some fat is necessary to insulate the body and provide energy to the cells. Too much body fat can put a person at risk for obesity and related disorders. Excess weight may put a person at risk for circulatory conditions like high blood pressure, heart disease, and strokes. Weight loss can help lower blood pressure alongside other lifestyle and dietary changes. Maintaining a lower blood pressure reduces the risk for stroke. Losing even a small amount of body fat may lower the chances of developing heart disease.

The incidence of kidney disease and Type 2 diabetes is also higher in the obese population. Fatty liver disease has a direct correlation to obesity as well, with damage to the liver being noticed as early as childhood. Higher levels of body fat are also associated with increased risks for a number of cancers. This includes cancers of the kidney liver, pancreas, gallbladder, colon, and rectum. High BMI, large waist circumference, and rapid weight gain are all associated with a higher incidence of breast cancer in postmenopausal women, as well. Weight loss can positively affect the outlook for all of these disorders in many cases.

The important thing to consider is that weight gain and body fat are largely determined by modifiable risk factors. This means things like physical inactivity and excess energy intake have a direct influence on obesity levels. Body fat should be monitored regularly to determine if actions need to be taken to reduce a person’s energy intake or increase their level of exercise. This process can help control weight gain or improve weight loss over time.



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Last updated on August 31, 2017 by Quincy Miller

Quincy is a writer who was born in Texas, but moved to Los Angeles to pursue his life-long dream of someday writing a second page to one of his screenplays.


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