How Often Should You Weigh Yourself
How often should you weigh yourself or the real question I have is, “Can A Scale Help You Lose Weight?” Although my research has shown different answers to these questions I hope I can provide enough information to help you reach the right answer for yourself.
The consensus of opinions clearly is that “Never!” is not the correct answer. Waiting for a regular doctor’s visit to get yourself weighed isn’t the best plan. Judging by how healthy you feel or how a particular piece of clothing fits just isn’t enough information. I like having as much information available as I can to help me make my decisions.
Your weight is a part of your total overall health profile and it’s good to keep tabs on yourself. You should weigh yourself on a regular basis on a dependably accurate scale.
If you don’t have a scale you should plan on getting one. If you want more information than just how much you weigh please check out this review for my recommendation of the OMRON Full Body Sensor Body Composition Monitor and Scale
Jillian Michaels of “The Biggest Loser” suggests
“I recommend that people weigh themselves once a week, at the same time every week. Weighing yourself every day can have a negative impact on you.”
The scale and weighing yourself should not be a source of stress and self-loathing and a sense of failure. It’s just information, a tool and no more than a compass indication in which direction you’re going.
Your Weight Varies Throughout The Day
Your weight is going to change every day and several times during the day, due mostly to body fluid fluctuations. You might be just retaining water from too much sodium or you need to go to the bathroom. There are many things that can affect your weight… not just FAT!
The problem is if you’re not aware of the variables that can have an effect on that number on your bathroom scale it could freak you out or worse yet discourage you from a program that may very well be working for you. The worst thing that can happen is to stop doing what is working.
Don’t let the numbers freak you out, no matter if you decide to weigh-in weekly, daily or hourly. It’s just a number and you can control which way that number goes by Nutrition and exercise. Take control of your lifestyle and how you interpret the numbers.
If you decide to go with the Once-A-Week Weigh In program, there is one day of the week that seems to be the most popular Wednesday. The basic rules for this are: weigh yourself once a week at the same time, on the same day of the week, wearing similar clothing, and most importantly, ON THE SAME ACCURATE SCALE.
“Weighing yourself just once a week will give you a more accurate read — you’ll allow time for the scale to actually show weight loss.” ~ JillianMichaels
Although I respect Jillian Michael’s opinion, I don’t see how less data can give you a more accurate reading. Although I like the connection of the words Wednesday and Weigh-In and I think weighing in once a week is fine, for me personally it’s just not enough data for me to analyze. What if Wednesday (or whatever day you choose) isn’t your most consistent day? I know that it isn’t the best indicator for me.
Daily Weighing Makes You Too Obsessed
If I weighed myself just once a week (and I’ve tried it) I actually become more obsessed rather than less. I might limit my water intake or worse than that eat less than what made me feel satisfied to make weight for the week. Then I’m stuck with those results for another whole week. I don’t think so.
By weighing myself more often (as much as several times a day) I understand that the number on the scale means next to nothing, it’s just a trend, a compass direction (that I mentioned earlier). It’s signpost in a life-long journey… nothing more.
If one measurement seems askew I can look back to what might have caused the fluctuation and make an immediate adjustment. I couldn’t do that if I were weighing myself once a week.
Can A Scale Help You Lose Weight and Live Longer
The Blue Zones Solution says that it can, and I quote.
“Studies have found that people who weigh themselves everyday weight less than people who never weigh themselves… “
“Getting on the scale every day may boost enthusiasm for healthy behaviors and lead to greater weight loss, according to a new U.S. study.” ~ Reuters Health
Obese and overweight people who weighed themselves daily lost more weight than those who weighed in less often, likely because the daily weighers made better food and exercise choices, researchers say. The information is more immediate which makes it easier and faster to act on.
If you pig-out one day you would normally expect to pay the price when you weigh in tomorrow. If you were weighing in on Wednesday, you might forget about the pig-out and blame it on your nutrition and exercise program. Once a week is just too long between weigh-ins.
If Weekly Is Good Than Daily Is Better
“It might be that daily weighing triggers an understanding of what people were eating and how it was affecting their weight,” said lead author Dori Steinberg, a nutritionist and researcher with the Duke Global Health Institute at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina.
Keeping track of everything you put into your mouth can be hard and stressful. I’m always looking for the EZ Way. Instead, just focus on weighing yourself daily, to monitor your progress to determining whether your Nutrition and exercise habits are working.”
How To Do It
Place a scale in front of your toilet, and get in the habit of using both of them daily. If it’s right in front of you as you sit on the throne it’s pretty EZ to remember. It only takes a few seconds, and the results can provide positive reinforcement or act as motivation to pay attention to what you’re putting into your face.
Or if you weigh yourself like I do several times in the morning and you don’t have a normal BM, that could indicate that you’re constipated or not eating enough fiber. Which hopefully could help you to make some adjustments to your nutrition. By the way, How Much Fiber Are You Getting Every Day?
I Weigh Myself Several Times Every Morning
I have a pen and an index card where I make a note of three weights. I even wrote an article about it, “How To Lose 5 Pounds Fast”. Really what I was writing about is weighing yourself first thing in the morning before using the toilet, and then weighing yourself after using the toilet and then again after getting a good sweat going after a workout. I have no problem dropping 5 pounds in hours.
Is this obsessive or excessive? I don’t know, maybe, but it helps me keep track over the long term and for me it’s all about the long term and making the long term as long as I possibly can.
“Long-term habits make more of a difference than short-term splurges.” ~ Tim Skwiat, MEd., CSCS, Pn1 BioTRUST Nutrition
This is the essence of long-term weight loss. It’s not where you are in six weeks it’s where you are in six years that counts. That’s when you can tell if what you’re doing is working and if you can stay with it.
I tell people that the first 10 pounds or so that they lose (on any program) is usually water and waste and not fat. It’s still weight and can inspire many to keep on with what they’re doing.
The Scale That I Use
I do weigh myself three times every day and although it would take just a few moments more to do a full body composition monitor, I don’t do that. I wait to do a full body composition reading when there’s been some significant change in weight, not every time I jump on the scale. I know some of you will be glad to hear that there is a limit to my insanity… but I assure you that I’m not insane. In fact, your weight is directly related to your health and longevity.
It’s Not About The Weight
It’s not about the weight for me and I hope it’s not about the weight for you. More than a third of Americans are obese, and even losing a few percentage points of body weight can improve a person’s health risk factors, for high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes, high blood sugar and cancer. They’re all weight-related.
There’s so much that we can’t control in life, but what we eat, how much we move and how much we weigh is within your control… OUR CONTROL!
Believing that this is true is the first step toward controlling your weight, your health and your longevity.
How often should you weigh yourself? Weighing yourself once a day or once a week is an EZ First Step.
Can A Scale Help You Lose Weight?
I would say, beyond any doubt, “YES!” In fact, I’d be willing to bet my life on it.
As always your Comments and Questions are welcome.
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