Tips for Accurately Tracking Weight Loss
July 17, 2019
We get a lot of questions about weight fluctuation during weight loss efforts, especially for those who weigh themselves daily. Our most important tip:
Weigh yourself once per week (not more often than that) at the same time of day, on the same scale.
According to Dr. Morrison, the purpose of tracking your weight during a weight loss plan is to get a sense of achieving a goal, which is usually to lose fat mass and increase lean muscle mass. A weight scale is actually not good at measuring this, since it only provides information on total body weight. Total body weight is a combination of lean muscle mass, fat mass and water weight, (and of course all of the other organs in the body). There can be a lot of weight fluctuation, which is entirely normal.
When a person weighs themselves in the morning versus at night, there are a number of variables that can influence this number, including how much food and water was consumed and how much waste (stool and urine) was eliminated during that day. These “ins” and “outs” have a sizable impact on total body weight. A person can weigh up to 2 lbs heavier just by drinking 1 liter of water, so just imagine if a person drinks 2 to 3 liters of water each day.
Obviously clothes add a sizable amount to your in-office body weight. In our office, we generally suspect clothes will add 4 lbs to a person's weight, depending on the season. Keep in mind that our scale is just for our records and is consistent over time. Your scale at home is, too.
Weigh yourself once a week at the same time of day each week on the same scale. To get the whole picture (body fat percentage versus lean muscle mass), use a body composition device like inBody or our BIA machine.
This guide was written by Dr. Morrison and the health and nutrition experts at The Morrison Center. Our team is dedicated to helping you achieve optimal health through the treatment and prevention of disease.
Dr. Jeffrey Morrison is an award-winning medical doctor, a leader in the field of Integrative Medicine, and champion of a nutritional approach to healthcare
Robin is a registered dietitian nutritionist specializing in Integrative Medicine, Functional Medicine and holistic healing modalities. She helps her clients address complicated conditions and return to wellness.
Stephanie is a Holistic Nutrition Consultant and Emotional Freedom Technique practitioner with a passion for helping her clients fulfill their potential through both emotional and physical optimization.