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BioMed Research International
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 475659, 10 pages
Research Article

A Comparison Study of Portable Foot-to-Foot Bioelectrical Impedance Scale to Measure Body Fat Percentage in Asian Adults and Children

1Centre for Population Health (CePH) and Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
2Department of Sports Medicine, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
3Department of Paediatrics, Faculty of Medicine, University of Malaya, 50603 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Received 14 July 2014; Revised 6 August 2014; Accepted 8 August 2014; Published 28 August 2014

Academic Editor: Abel Romero-Corral

Copyright © 2014 Pei Ying Sim et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Objective. To compare the measurements of body fat percentage (BF%) using the foot-to-foot bioelectrical impedance analysis (FTF-BIA) with the direct segmental multifrequency BIA (DSM-BIA). Methods. There were 36 men and 52 women ( years) with 57% Malays, 30% Chinese, and 13% Indian. For children, there were 45 boys and 26 girls ( years) with 52% Malay, 15% Chinese, and 33% Indian. Results. Mean height for men was 168.4 cm, 11 cm taller than women. Men were 10 kg heavier than women at 70 kg. BF% in women was 32% and 33% whereas BF% in men was 23% and 25% when measured using FTF-BIA and DSM-BIA, respectively. In children, BF% measured with FTF-BIA and DSM-BIA was 49% and 46%, respectively. The correlations were significant for men (, SEE = 2.80), women (, SEE = 3.31), boys (, SEE = 5.44), and girls (, SEE = 5.27). The BF% in underweight/normal (, SEE = 2.47) and that in overweight/obese adults (, SEE = 3.61) were strongly correlated. The correlations were significant in normal/underweight (, SEE = 3.78) and obese/overweight children (, SEE = 6.49). All ethnic groups showed significant correlation with BF%. Malay adults (, SEE = 3.27) and children (, SEE = 0.88) showed significant mean differences in BF%. Conclusion. The FTF-BIA showed higher accuracy for all normal/underweight and Chinese group with acceptable overestimation in children and underestimation in adults. Caution should be taken when interpreting BF% depending on gender, BMI, and ethnicity.