Recently I had been looking for a smart scale which could measure not only weight but also other body composition measurements. I have determined that I would like to improve body muscle bulk while losing some weight and reducing body fat. As I have a regular exercise regime, and am reducing my calorie intake, the next step was to get a state-of-the-art electronic scales which can measure and log many different body parameters – Withings Body Cardio was the choice I made after doing my research.
Withings Body Cardio is the latest smart scales from Withings which can do many different measurements. These include body weight, heart rate, body fat, muscle mass, bone mass, body water etc.
In the first instance, I plugged in the scales via the Micro USB port to charge it up. After this, I connected it via Bluetooth to my iPhone via the Withings Health Mate App downloaded from the App Store. You will need to press the power button for 3 seconds which brings up the setup mode. Then it is simply a 4-step process to get it connected. I also setup wifi connection through my BT Home Hub router, so it will send the information directly to my iPhone for each weighing I did.
During the setup process, it also updated the firmware of the Withings scale. Once that was completed, it was ready to be used.
One of the important features of a scale is its ability to give accurate weight readings. The Withings scale comes with Position Control feature which will tell you if you are not properly balanced on the scales – I did not have any issues with my positioning but my wife needed to adjust how she stood on the scale in order to do it correctly; I think she was used to the old Weight Watchers scales, which I found to be unreliable (fluctuating within a minute by up to 500 grams.
Once I had done enough weighings (you will need 5 in a row to do the Pulse Wave Velocity), it will show up as a graph both on the scales and on the App, showing the weight, heart rate, fat mass, bone mass, body water and muscle mass.
The 2 big questions I had were:
- Is it is accurate in measuring weight?
- Is its claim to be able to measure weight accurately on any surface (carpet and wooden) true?
To answer this question, I measured myself four times on carpet and the same number of times on the ceramic tiled floor of my bathroom. These all were within 100 grams of each other at 75.4-75.5 kg. There was one reading where it had gone up to 75.6 kg, but that was because I had my iPhone in my pocket. But I did do further measurements after breakfast as well, which is why the weight had gone up a bit. So the answer to the above two questions is Yes, it is accurate on different floor surfaces and does not vary much between measurements done close together.
Now one of the other features I liked about this scales, is that it gives the Pulse wave velocity. Simply put, if the arteries (which carry blood away from the heart) are stiffer, then the blood will flow through it faster. Which means that lower pulse wave velocities is an indication that the arteries are in better condition, due to better health, diet, exercise regime, less stress i.e. healthier lifestyle.
Mine unfortunately measured 9.6m/s which is not optimal, but that was because I had inadvertently done some exercise prior to the measurements – I try to exercise when I watch sports on TV, as it is supposed to inspire me to get fit. I will need to monitor this over time, as it is the trend which will be the more useful information to have.
When I did do 5 measurements the next morning, it gave me very consistent weights 75.2-75.3 kg and now my Pulse wave velocity was 8.9 m/s which is described as normal. This is still a way off from the optimal level which is supposed to be around 6.9 m/s – so there is another parameter for me to work on.
I have to say that the Withing Body’s cardio scale appears to be accurate and able to provide the monitoring of many different body parameters. The fact it will upload the data through wifi to my iPhone makes it that bit more useful. It gives a great way to track weight loss, resting heart rate and the pulse wave velocity to predict how good my lifestyle regime is – and hopefully this will be improving over time.
Given that it is rather costly at £150, it is not the scale for everyone. But if you are very much into healthier living and want to have graphs and data to give you an indication of how well you are doing, then this scale should do it. The fact it is accurate measuring weight has won it for me. Recommended.