The Bod Pod provides an accurate method of measuring body fat composition, and Medcan Clinic is the first in Toronto to offer it to the public. 

Medcan Clinic is Canada's largest private preventive health–care facility. Located in the busy core of downtown Toronto, the multi–floor Medcan office houses 40 physicians practising specialties from dermatology to nutrition to genetics. The clinic's service–focused practice centres around a four–hour comprehensive health assessment that goes through 45 diagnostic and lab tests to assess general health issues and possibly assist in early disease detection.

But the newest jewel in Medcan's crown is the Bod Pod, a spaceage–looking device that measures body fat composition. Brendan Fox is a personal trainer and kinesiologist with Medcan; he's used the device — the only publicly available one in Toronto — on more than 20 members and personal training clients since the clinic acquired the device in March.

What is the Bod Pod used for and how does it work?
"The Bod Pod is used in universities, on Olympians and for medical research—it's the gold standard in measuring body fat. Clients put on spandex and a swim cap for an accurate reading and then sit in the machine for two minutes. It uses air displacement coupled with body weight to figure out the density of your body and can also measure metabolism, allowing you to accurately understand how many calories to consume and burn for weight loss."

Aren't there other ways of measuring body fat?
"There are a lot of limitations to more traditional methods. Electronic methods can be thrown off by varying levels of hydration in the body. Fat calipers are generally reliable but there's a lot of inter–tester variation. The Bod Pod is so accurate it doesn't leave any doubt as to the validity of the test. It even takes ethnicity and lung volume into account."

Who is the Bod Pod designed for?
"It's for regular people who have a concern for their health and want the best information possible. If you're spending time exercising, getting fit and eating well, you should have an accurate feedback loop that can adjust for variables of water weight and muscle mass. There are a lot of people who lie to themselves about where they're at in their health regime. It's a wake up call for a lot of people who just use a weight scale, but it's mainly for motivation."

50 York Street, Suite 1500, Toronto, ON

Photo Medcan Clinic photos by Ashley Satchell