There’s always a debate in the fitness and nutrition world – some believe the scale is the enemy, others embrace it wholeheartedly.
So what’s the deal with scales? How often, if at all, should you weigh yourself?
We’ll present both sides of the argument.
To Weigh or Not to Weigh…
First, the problems with the scale – it doesn’t differentiate between muscle and fat. It gives you a straightforward number. But what if you’re an active mom who exercises 5 days per week and has some lean muscle, for example? Or what if you’re an athlete with more muscle and low body fat?
Does that number on the scale really matter?
On the flip side, if you’re trying to lose weight – study after study suggests that those who weigh themselves more frequently are more successful at losing and maintaining their weight loss.
Data from the National Weight Control Registry, a database whose members have lost an average of 66 lbs and kept it off for nearly 6 years, shows one positive habit is that 75% of those in the Registry is that they weigh themselves at least one time each week.
And research from renowned obesity researcher, Rena Wing, has shown weighing daily is even more effective.
The idea here is to make sure the scale is headed in the right direction. You want to keep your weight in check and “catch” if the scale starts going up or doesn't move.
If you never weigh yourself, this wouldn’t be possible. Sure, there are daily fluctuations, but if you’re a 40 year old mom of 2 who is overweight or obese, the number on the scale should be going down if you're making the right food choices and even when you are exercising regularly.
Two sides to the argument.
We suggest weighing yourself once weekly, but know that your self worth isn't defined by the number on the scale — don't live and die by it, but awareness (vs. avoidance) is important.
What do you think? Are scales a friend or a foe?
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