Your Scale is a Big Fat Liar! Don’t you agree with me? Read on..
Some days, you are happy hopping onto the weighing scale and on others days, it makes you gloomy.
Let me tell you a story about one of my weight loss client. On her visit a day before yesterday (22nd August), a client was happy to have lost 8 kilos in 3 months at Poshan. After all, she has been struggling with her weight for the past 10 years because of her thyroid and PCOS. The following day (23rd August) she had a big function to attend at her in-laws and she has been preparing for this day for the past 3 months. She was excited to show everyone her new avatar and renewed confidence.
When I received a call from her last evening, I thought she couldn’t wait to share all the good comments coming her way. She however, was crying and sounded disappointed because she thought she had gained 6 kilos overnight. The bathroom scale at her sister-in-laws house told her so and also made her feel cheated.
It took me a while to assure her she definitely had lost weight. Not to mention the improvement in her energy levels, improved thyroid and ovarian function and a glowing skin. But the scale shattered all that she had achieved in 3 months. So, I asked her to pay a visit to me today. She came in this morning just to make sure I wasn’t giving her false assurances. When she stepped onto my ‘bioeletrical impedance weighing machine’ a bright smile appeared on her face. She was in fact 8.5 kilos lighter than she first came into my clinic. Now that she was all assured of her weight loss effort paying off, I explained to her the reasons for these fluctuations.
First off, at the clinic, I calibrate my weighing scale every month so that it shows you the weight you are meant to be.I also make sure to service it regularly. The bathroom scale at her sister-in-laws place perhaps was not calibrated. Hence, the variation in the weight.
Remember the following points when you are using the weighing scale as a motivation to keep going on your weight loss journey:
1. When tracking your weight loss journey, make sure you always use a calibrated weighing scale. This shall be your exact weight. If you do not have a calibrated weighing scale, you might want to use a calibrated scale at your doctor’s or dietitian’s clinic. Then match the weight on the calibrated scale with the weight on your bathroom scale. Add or subtract the difference if any. Remember to do this, every time you weigh in.
2. Always use to the same scale to track your weight loss whenever possible. This shall negate any standard errors in the machines. You might see a different number when weighing at the doctors or the dietitian, at the gym or on your bathroom scale on the same day. Sticking to the same scale will help you prevent being happy when you weigh lighter on one scale or panicking when you weigh heavier on the other.
3. Monitor weight at the same time of the day. Remember you weigh slightly different (1-2 kilos) in the morning and at the night. This weight fluctuation is owing to the water your drink, your bowel movements, the food you eat, the undigested meal and the clothes you wear. Try and wear light clothes to get the closest estimate of your weight.
4. There is no best time to weigh yourself really. Try and stay consistent with the times at which you weigh yourself. Stick to either morning or evening. Most people prefer mornings because after you have peed and had your bowel movement, you tend to weigh lighter. But remember as soon as you eat or drink, the weight will show about 1-2 kilos heavier later in the day. So, it doesn’t really matter, whether you weigh yourself in the morning or the evening.
5. Don’t weigh yourself too often. Try and keep at least 1-2 weeks gap in between your two weigh-ins. Weighing yourself daily might upset you on some days that you weigh heavier. Perhaps from a bloated stomach during PMS or eating a heavier meal.
6. If you are indulging in weight bearing exercises as a part of your weight loss regime, you might begin to get heavier on the scale, but lose inches in stead. Muscle being heavier than fat, a fat loss and muscle gain would make you look heavier on the scale. In fact, this is the kind of weight loss, one must aim for!
Lastly, if the number on the scale makes or breaks your day, then its time to ditch your scale. There are other ways you can monitor your weight like your waist and hip measures, or a drop in your dress size.