Weight management: How often should you check your weight?

While some say daily weigh-ins are ok, others say checking once a week is the best. Photo: Shutterstock/Antonio Guillem

Soon after burning calories in the gym, most weight-watchers can't wait to check how much lighter they have got, through the numbers reflecting on the bathroom scale. The value can both be an inspiration and demotivation for many, depending on your mindset. While some get further motivated to watch what they eat and stay active if they weigh more, the same number can serve as a symbol of 'hopelessness' for others. This is also applicable if the scale shows a lower weight. While some people take it as an indication to keep working at their target weight, others would want to consider it a signal to rest well, sleep and eat what they want to. Regardless, expert opinions on how often one should check their weights differ. While some say daily weigh-ins are ok, others say checking once a week is the best. Let's see what are the benefits of both approaches:

Weekly weighing
1) A realistic assessment
A daily fluctuation of weight is normal and taking it as an indicator of weight loss may not be always correct. Many say that when they check their weight daily, they tend to digress from the healthy eating path on and off, assuring themselves that they will be back on track the next day. However, a weekly check makes you want to wait and eat healthier rather than binge eating. 
2) Reduced stress
Those who check once a week have a reduced level of anxiety and a better relationship with food and water, as they won't want to run to their scale soon after a meal. You will also tend to focus on other indicators of fitness like improved stamina, energy level and overall well-being rather than basing your health purely on a number. 
3) Paying attention to the body
You will listen better to your body's indicators of thirst, hunger, lethargy and fullness when checking weight every day is not your concern. You will also employ your mind better to assess your progress, eat right and develop sustainable habits. 

Daily weighing
1) Better for short-term goals
If a lower number on the scale can motivate you to work harder, the daily numbers can inspire you further. You can also work better towards your short-term weight loss goals if you know your daily numbers. 
2) Real-time adjustments
Depending on the number on the scale, you can make adjustments on the go or even remind yourself to curb your intake, and drink more water or even more more. 
3) Insights into health issues
For those who have health issues like heart disease or diabetes, checking their weight daily can give some important insights into whether they are taking enough fluids, eating the right food or retaining fluids in their body.                                                                               

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