3 Reasons Why the Scale Isn't Good for Weight Loss
By Genevieve Cunningham
For years and years, I didn’t own a scale. I only knew how much I weighed when I had to go to the doctor, and honestly, it didn’t bother me. After a few birthdays passed, I decided that knowing my weight more than a couple of times per year might actually be beneficial. So, I broke down and bought a scale. For a while, I weighed myself about four times a day, sometimes more. I was obsessed, and when I weighed two pounds heavier at night than I had that morning, I panicked. It took a few months before I realized that this wasn’t a healthy approach either. Though a scale has a purpose, it’s important to use it wisely. Otherwise, it might do more harm than good. If you want to lose weight, the scale should most definitely be used sparingly. Take a look at these three reasons why the scale really isn’t the best approach to measuring weight loss success.
Your Weight Fluctuates
As previously mentioned, I would often weigh more at night than in the morning. But you know what else? I would also weigh heavier during certain weeks or weigh lighter during sickness. My weight was literally always changing, and the more that I watched it, the more obsessed I became. When I weighed heavier for female reasons, I still obsessed, and even though I knew why I was heavy, I couldn’t stop worrying and adjusting my caloric intake. It’s just not a healthy way to live. If you want to weigh, do it at the same time everyday, and make allowances for certain body changes and conditions.
The Number is Just a Number
Though a number on the scale can give you some sort of indication of health, it doesn’t tell the whole story. In fact, the scale can’t tell you how your body is made or how much of that number is fat instead muscle. If you start a weight loss program, you are likely to actually gain weight (in muscle), but lose inches off of the body. You’ll look more sculpted and probably feel better, but the scale may not budge at all. That can be really discouraging when you really should be celebrating. For reasons such as this, using weight as your sole source of judging success is a bad idea.
It’s Mentally Stressful
When you weigh all of the time, it can cause mental stress. Why is that number different again? What did I eat that I shouldn’t have? How do I get back down to three pounds lighter? The more you weigh, the more likely you are to be constantly plagued by these kinds of questions, and the more stress you are placing on yourself. Instead, cut yourself some slack. You are doing a great job! Take a peek at the scale, sure, but don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
If you really want to lose weight, use the scale as a supplement, but don’t rely on it for a complete look at your health. Measure your inches, your BMI, and honestly, the way that you feel. These are much better indications of overall health than a random number on a scale.
To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Eagan, Minn.