Estimation of adiposity from body mass and height: a comparison of regression methods

Burton, R. F. (2010) Estimation of adiposity from body mass and height: a comparison of regression methods. International Journal of Body Composition Research, 8(3), pp. 77-84.

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Objectives: Several forms of regression equation have been used for estimating fat content from body massand height. The aims are to compare seven forms of equation for accuracy, to elucidate their interrelation-ships and theoretical basis and so to facilitate the integration of published studies. Method: The equations were compared using published data sets. For each set comparisons were madeboth of the various regression parameters and of the accuracy with which percentage body fat was esti-mated, directly or indirectly, from body mass and height. Results and conclusions: Three forms of prediction equation, mathematically related and justified by noveltheoretical modelling, have exactly equal overall accuracy and share almost identical regression parame-ters: the regression of fat mass index on body mass index (BMI), of percentage body fat on 1/BMI and offat mass on body mass and height2. Other methods can predict percentage body fat about as well, namelythe regression of fat mass on body mass and height (with one extra parameter), the regression of percentagebody fat on BMI using quadratic or semilogarithmic expressions and, less reliably and less justifiably, theregression of fat mass on BMI. Regression of percentage body fat on 1/BMI or of fat mass index on BMI isrecommended, being theoretically sound, already established, and each requiring just two regressionparameters. Consideration of their theoretical basis should allow additional variables, such as measures ofbody-build, to be added to prediction equations in functionally-meaningful ways. Approximate inter-conversion between different forms of equation is sometimes possible.

Item Type:Articles
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Burton, Dr Richard
Authors: Burton, R. F.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Life Sciences
Journal Name:International Journal of Body Composition Research
Publisher:Smith-Gordon and Co. Ltd.

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