6 Times when the scale is lying to you
So you’ve been dieting for a while and you want to know if your weight is going the right way.
It is tempting to step on the scale every day, or even multiple times a day, to see what is going on.
You should now that the scale isn’t always right, and it might not be the most accurate way to track your progress!
Here you see 6 times when the scale is lying to you!
Not a big fan of reading long blog posts? Don’t worry I got you! Here you can see my video about the topic weight fluctuation and scales!
To lose weight you need to be in a calorie deficit, meaning you have to consume fewer calories than your body uses.
This isn’t a one-day thing, you’ll have to be in a consistent deficit for a while to start losing fat.
The scale isn’t always accurate or giving you a number you can rely on! It is important to understand the different times it might not be the best way to weigh yourself
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#1. When you are on your period
When you are on your period, your body holds on to more water.
The scale can’t tell the difference between water weight and fat. It measures overall body mass. Therefore it will be a lot higher, and the scale will lie to you.
But there is some good news, the two weeks before your period, your metabolism gets boosted a little.
This is because of all the hormonal changes going on in your body, that will eventually lead to your period.
But don’t get too happy already. The increase is only 4% and those extra calories burned are often are eaten because of cravings.
That increase in metabolism can also be an explanation for the increase in cravings in this period.
When you’d weigh yourself every day the week leading up to your period, you’d notice that your weight increases quickly.
That is because of the extra water you are holding on to. But don’t worry this will drop as soon as your period is over.
So how do you fix this?
Well, you can skip weighing yourself that week. Or you can buy a scale that is a little more advanced.
These scales can measure your body weight, muscle mass, body fat and total body water.
This way you can keep track of what is really happening in your body.
#2. After you have a workout
Want to know how much fat you lose after working out? Well, it is not the best idea to step on the scale after a workout.
And you won’t lose fat in just one workout, it takes a long period of time and a calorie deficit to achieve this.
During your workout, you lose a lot of body water because you sweat. When you replenish that water, after or during your training your weight goes up as well.
This increase and decrease in weight is not body fat, it is water weight. And this fluctuates very easily.
So it might not be the best idea to weigh yourself after a workout, or after drinking a lot!
#3 After eating something
What? You only had a light breakfast and that dinner. But still gained 4 pounds? How the hell is that possible?
Creating body fat takes time, and a big calorie surplus (more calories than your body needs). But weighing yourself after eating means that your scale is lying to you.
There is an explanation for this. Your blood volume will increase when you consume a meal.
And of course, your weight is also higher because of the food that you consumed and possibly drank with it.
Adding this all together you have a lot of extra weight that your scale is picking up on.
Before your body uses or stores the calories from the meal you ate, it will have to digest it. And sometimes it will take 24 or even up to 72 hours.
Don’t think that this extra weight is actually fat gain. There is a big difference between gaining weight and fat.
To gain a pound of fat you need to consume 3500-3600 calories extra. That is a lot, but you can achieve this by consuming a calorie surplus every day structurally.
#4 After eating out
When eating out you eat more salt than you are used to. In restaurants, especially fast food chains, there is still a lot of salt being used.
Your body is not used to this anymore, and its response is to hold onto water. The result of that is the increase in weight the next morning.
This isn’t because you gained 2 pounds of fat all of a sudden. It seems like it, but this is just water weight.
Don’t decrease your water intake the next day! Try to get in your normal intake and you see that the weight goes back to normal.
It is not necessary to be afraid of dinners outside your house or social events. Enjoy it and look at the bigger picture!
#5 Before going to the bathroom
This one might sound obvious but it is something I’d like to point out.
Try to weigh yourself after going to the bathroom, but before eating something. If you do this every time you’ll have a very stable weigh in every day!
When you do this every time after going to the bathroom and before your breakfast you’ll have the most consistent data every time!
#6. When you moved your scale
This is one you might not have thought of. But when you move the scale or the floor is uneven, it won’t show you accurate numbers.
Placing a scale on an uneven floor can also cause the numbers to be inaccurate.
It can actually be a big difference so try to keep your scale in one place to avoid this!
To fix this you can try to place your scale somewhere else in the house, where the floor is even.
Or you can make sure that your scale stays in the same place.
So when should you weigh yourself?
We discussed the many times when it is not the best option to go and step on the scale, but when is it the right time?
The best way and time to weigh yourself is around the same time, after going to the bathroom and before eating something.
Some people are not a fan of weighing every single day, and I understand why. However, I do think this is the best approach for some people.
When doing this it is important to understand that it is not about the exact number that day, you use that number to calculate your average over the week.
With this average, you can see if you are making progress or not.
If you weigh yourself every day, you’ll notice a lot of fluctuation. That is why some people don’t like to weight every day.
But that can also become a problem when you only weigh once a week. Because you could weigh in on a very high spike, or a low weight.
As long as you don’t get emotionally attached to the numbers on the scale I’d advice you to weigh every day, and take the average.
Don’t forget to share and let me know your thoughts in the comments!
Do you want to learn everything you need to know about nutrition to lead a healthy lifestyle and to make weight loss easier on you? My new eBook, Nutrition 101 – The basics you need to know is available now! Click here to check it out!