Did you know that you can trick your body fat meter with water into thinking you have a different body fat percentage than you actually do? Now I doubt you want to do this on purpose. What is the point of measuring whether it will alter the results? But knowing how you can trick your meter into giving incorrect results tells you how to make it give more accurate results. So let me explain how to trick your body fat meter and we’ll go from there.
First of all, you should know that this trick only works for devices that use Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis (BIA) to calculate your body weight. In other words, if you use one of those gadgets that applies a small electrical current to you to measure your body fat percentage, this trick will work.
Here’s the trick. In order for your body fat device to display a lower body fat percentage, be sure to drink plenty of water to stay well hydrated. On the contrary, to show that you have a higher percentage of body fat than you actually do, let yourself be dehydrated.
Here’s why the trick works. BIA devices measure the amount of resistance your body provides to the small current that they hit you with. Fat has less water than muscle and provides more resistance. And muscle provides less resistance than fat. In fact, the device measures the total amount of water in your body. You can trick it by manipulating the amount of water in your body yourself.
Drink plenty of water and stay well hydrated, and your device will show you that you have a lower body fat percentage. Don’t drink enough water, or you get hungover and dehydrated that way, and the device will show you that you have a higher percentage.
How Knowing the Trick Helps You
If you know how to cheat your body fat measuring device, you also know how to make it more accurate. Try to maintain a constant intake of water and other fluids from day to day. Doing so will keep the amount of water in your body relatively constant, which will make the results of the device more consistent. Along the same lines, be consistent about whether you have something to drink right before measuring. A large glass of something shortly before measuring could also alter the results.
And don’t measure your body fat percentage if you drank a lot of alcohol the night before. You probably won’t like what you see. Alcohol dehydrates you and that will make your body fat percentage appear to increase.