The most basic principle of weight management is that total body weight and body composition (fat weight versus lean fat free weight) is the result of the difference between energy (calories) consumed versus energy (calories) utilized. Metabolism is the number of calories your body burns per day. Resting metabolism is the amount of energy utilized to exist- to breathe, maintain body temperature, for the heart to pump, etc. Knowing this calorie expenditure is the key to successful weight management. In other words, everyone has a calorie "budget" to consume based on the total calorie output. This is true whether the goal is to maintain weight, lose weight, or gain weight.
What is the MedGem?
The MedGem is an FDA approved, hand held indirect calorimeter. Your body combines food (carbohydrates, fats, and proteins) with oxygen to produce energy. The MedGem measures the amount of oxygen the body consumes (VO2) and determines resting metabolic rate (RMR) in calories/day. It takes all the "guess work" out of determining what calorie (energy) "budget" would be best followed to achieve weight management goals. Without this information, nutritionists estimate energy expenditure using physical characteristics- age, height, and weight. These estimates can be unreliable resulting in initial inaccurate calorie budget recommendations and failed attempts at weight loss as people "experiment" with different calorie amounts.
The test is conducted in the morning as accurate results require the individual to be fasting without prior activity and exercise that day. The person rests on an exam table, the nose is closed shut, and then breathing is done through a mouthpiece inserted in the device. Within ten minutes the person's RMR is determined. This information allows the nutritionist to accurately calculate total daily calories expended with the individual's activities of daily living and exercise routine included.
Who would benefit from having the MedGem test?
Anyone wanting to know what their "calorie budget" should be to achieve desired weight loss, weight gain, or weight maintenance would benefit from this test- especially those whose attempts at meeting their weight goals are not working!
How accurate are the results of the MedGem?
The MedGem device has been tested in numerous mechanical trials and human studies employing methodologies typically used in research settings. There are no statistical or clinically relevant differences between oxygen uptake or RMR measured with MedGem and the reference systems.
How much does the test cost?
The current fee for this test through Healthy Directions, Nutrition Therapy and Counseling Center of Doylestown Hospital, is $70.
This product is not meant to substitute for proper medical diagnosis, care, or treatment related to a medical condition. Anyone deciding to make a change in lifestyle, exercise, nutrition, or other routines should check with his/her physician.