Predicting Total Body Fat from Skinfold Thicknesses

Four skinfold thicknesses are conventionally meas

Body Weight Years
Figure 4.5 Standard body mass index curves from birth to 20 years for boys (a, above) and girls (b, opposite). Copyright © Child Growth Foundation. Reproduced by permission. Copies of the CGF BMI charts are available from Harlow Printing, Maxwell Street, South Shileds NE33 4PU, UK

ured (Figure 4.3), using calipers at biceps, triceps, subscapular and suprailiac, and the sum of all four skinfolds (equation 1), or just the triceps skinfold (equation 2), with subjects' age, are used in linear multiple regression to predict total body fat. The original equations for use in adults (2) have been cross-validated in a separate sample and found to be robust in adults aged 20-60 years (6), but tend to underestimate substantially the total fat in the elderly, particularly women (6,22) (Figure 4.6).

Body fat % (men) = [30.9 x log10 ^skinfolds (mm)] + [0.271 x Age (years)] - 39.9 (1)

Body fat % (women) = [30.8 x log10 ^skinfolds (mm)] + [0.274 x Age (years)] - 31.7

Adult Tricep Skinfold Chart

Body fat % (men) = (1.31 x Triceps) + (0.430 x Age) - 9.2 (2)

Body fat % (women) = (0.944 x Triceps) + (0.279 x Age) + 4.6

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