Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Departmental Honors


Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Sciences

First Advisor

Heidi Wengreen


Purpose: This study was conducted to evaluate the validity of the BODPOD air displacement plethysmography as compared to the DEXA (dual energy x-ray absorptiometry) in testing body fat percentages in female collegiate runners. The link between caloric intake and body fat distribution, as well as the link between calcium and vitamin D intake and bone density was also evaluated.

Methods: Participants were 8 female collegiate athletes from the USU track team. A 3-day diet history was obtained from each participant and body fat test were performed using both the BODPOD and the DEXA scans within a four month period due to scheduling problems. Results from the diet history were evaluated using the Food Processor SQL and correlations were calculated using SPSS. Information regarding the regularity of their menstrual cycles as well as incidence of stress fractures were also obtained in an interview.

Results: There was a correlation between the BODPOD and the DEXA scans (R = 0.731, P = 0.04). BODPOD varied by as much as 6.7% from the body fat results recorded using the DEXA. The median difference between body fat composition measured by the BodPod and DEXA scan was 3.7 (SD)%. Depending on the needs of the user, this value may be problematic. There was no association between caloric intake and body distribution or calcium and vitamin D intake and bone density because of the small sample size and low variability.