Is there a way to measure the weight of skeletal muscle? I understand body fat and lean body mass can be measured by: skin fold calipers, electrical impedance, table lookup based on formula of weight, age, and height. I have not seen a method to determine skeletal muscle. I asked an endocrinologist and they were not aware of a method.

I suspect subtracting the weight of the skeletal bones, skin tissue and organs from the lean body mass weight could determine weight of skeletal muscle. It seems this number could vary greatly be the person unless perhaps people who handle deceased people have accurate measurements of the above for age, weight, height, etc...

It would be useful to know the weight of skeletal muscle because it could be used to determine body energy expenditure, as lean muscle uses more calories than fat.

  • $\begingroup$ You probably know that evidence of prior research is required on this site. It's a good question. Editing what you've found so far would make it better. :) $\endgroup$ Jan 7 at 18:52
  • $\begingroup$ Updated with research references. Are my categories ok for this? $\endgroup$
    – Nick
    Jan 7 at 20:45
  • $\begingroup$ Did you search "how to determine skeletal muscle mass"? $\endgroup$ Jan 7 at 20:47
  • $\begingroup$ I did and the calculations are for Lean Body Mass (LBM) = Total Weight – Fat Mass which includes Organs, Skin, Bones, Body Water, Muscle Mass. I think I'm looking for Muscle Mass, which will allow me to multiply it by 6 kcal/lbs and fat, 2 kcal/lbs to get a more accurate calculation of BMR. I don't think the 6 kcal/lbs is supposed to include organs, skin, bones and body water... I suspect this factor is for muscle tissue only. $\endgroup$
    – Nick
    Jan 7 at 21:05
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    $\begingroup$ This was the article I saw towards the bottom of the first page of hits. It compares two methods of estimating skeletal muscle mass. The method I'm familiar with is that using a DXA scan, although I'm passingly familiar that one can use MRI, but have not ever bothered becoming knowledgeable about it, because DXA scans are so easy and so much less expensive. Good research on your part, btw. $\endgroup$ Jan 8 at 4:22


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