" For, lo, the winter is past, the rain is over and gone; the flowers appear on the earth; the time of the singing of birds is come, and the voice of the turtle is heard in our land. " Song of Solomon

October 3, 2010

Good Scale/Bad Scale

 Edit:  I took down the link to Margie's blog in my sidebar.  She and her husband were both  tragically killed while out walking when hit by a car.  The driver of the car says he was trying to kill himself--his girlfriend had broken up with him that morning. He lived and is fine.  His was a selfish act.  Margie will be missed by her blogging friends.

When it comes to the scale, the digital food scale is a good thing.  It will help you correctly portion your food so that you can keep your food intake in line with your goals.

But the other kind of scale, the one you step on to weigh yourself, I have mixed feelings about it.  Weighing most of your food, is probably a good thing--especially when it comes to calorie dense foods.

However, weighing yourself daily or several times a day can be problematic for many.  Due to the fluid fluctuations in your body it is hard to tell if you have a true fat gain or loss.

That information can be self defeating.

If the scale is up, I am discouraged.  If it is down I am ecstatic and I may let down my guard.

Or I may reward myself and eat something that I'd have never considered eating that day.

Or I may be obsessive--thinking 'wow I'm on a roll'-- and eat even less food, hoping I'll reach my weight loss goal faster--get out of the diet misery-- and end up with a double whammy.

By eating less to speed things up, I may-- before the day is done-- end up binging because I've gotten too hungry.  On the heels of that--at my next weigh in--if I find I haven't lost or even worse I've gained--horror of horrors-- I'm am all the more disappointed.  Bam Bam, double wham.

It could be the nail in the coffin, the final straw.

So, for me, it's best I use the digital food scale daily.  But the bathroom scale I limit to  every 7-10 days when I'm on a weight loss diet.

Some of you are able to handle the daily weigh in--because you are looking at the pattern of ups and downs and getting the overall larger picture. Margie who blogs at My Healthy Living Through Weight Control comes to mind (link in the sidebar).  She weighs daily and has been very successful maintaining her weight loss.

But for many of us who are still trying to lose weight, the number on the scale in the moment holds too much power.

Once I reach my goal--3 pounds from now--my strategy will change.

I will continue to check my portions with the food scale daily.

But I will weigh my body more often too.  Every 3-4 days I think.  If the scale is up after two consecutive 3-4 day period weigh ins, I will immediately attack the problem.  I'd prefer to keep any gain to <5.

The time to be 'scared straight' is early on, when it is easy to repair the damage.
"....there have been many times when I have shed bitter tears, when if I had understood the situation better, I would have celebrated my good luck instead."


I am not a doctor and all information, suggestions, etc are my personal opinion only.