Weighing the options for monitoring your body fat


Withings Smart Body Analyzer (left) vs. DEXA, the
Withings Smart Body Analyzer (left) vs. DEXA, the "gold standard" for body fat analysis (right)
Photo: Graham Bower / Cult of Mac

If you want to lose weight, your Apple Watch can help you sustain healthy habits, but it can’t actually monitor your progress. For that you need to step onto scales.

Any scale will measure your weight, but that is only part of the story. Whether you are dieting or bulking up, it is just as important to keep track of your body fat. The trouble is, this is notoriously hard to measure accurately. As I discovered when I bought a new Withings Smart Body Analyzer, if you think you already know your body fat percentage, you are probably way off.

How Many Calories Do You Burn Using Your Magic Mouse Or Trackpad?



If you’re anything like me, you pretty much spend all of your day clicking. Clicking a mouse. Clicking a trackpad. Clicking a keyboard. And yet, despite all of that physical exertion, I’m still somehow a fatass. How can that be? Luckily, some scientists have looked into the problem, and figured out the answer: I’m just not clicking enough.

iHealth HS3 Wireless Bluetooth Scale: Down to the Bare Bones [Review, Fitness Special]




Out of the box, the iHealth HS3 Wireless Bluetooth Scale ($70) is somewhat impressive. With its digital (albeit not backlit) display and snazzy looking-glass top, this is a scale that will at least look spiffy in your bathroom when company is over. Even in the box, the scale makes a good case for gadget adoption: It promises to keep track of your weight, calories and exercise easily using only the scale itself and an accompanying app that can be used on your iPhone or iPad. Technically, the iHealth Scale does do that, but there are a few kinks that make this product’s promises fall flat.

Withings WiFi Body Scale: Quite Possibly The Best Way to Live Longer [Review, Fitness Special]



Despite all our 21st-century technical wizardry, one of the easiest and least expensive ways to get a very basic idea of physical health is through a metric that’s been used for a very long time: body weight.

The Withings WiFi Body Scale ($160) takes this concept to the next level in many ways, including allowing you access to all your data on a gorgeously designed iOS app. It also adds an even more important metric, body fat percentage, and goes a long way to erasing many of the pitfalls using a simple scale can lead to — and it does this all while remaining incredibly easy to use. In fact, it might be the most effective tool I’ve used to keep healthy.