Stop Weighing Yourself And Stop The Binge Eating Cycle!

How many of you weigh yourselves daily or nearly every day? Doesn’t it just make you crazy? Up 2 lbs, down 1/2, up 1, down 3. I recently had a client tell me that she had gained three pounds in three days. In order for that to be accurate, she would have had to consume 3500 calories more than she burned each day. Let’s do the math. That would mean that she had to consume 10, 500 calories in excess of what she had burned. Doesn’t seem very realistic unless it was the binge to end all binges. Did you know that your weight can fluctuate up to five pounds every day? This is typically due to water retention or loss. It is easy for the scale obsession to take over. I have had clients who weigh daily and that easily morphs into weight multiple times per day and adjusting their food intake accordingly. Let the insanity begin! Our body does not work so immediately. What you eat today will not translate into increased fat tomorrow. It simply does not happen that quickly. If you overeat, your body goes through a complex process of breaking the calories down into usable fuel in the form of glycogen (sugar) or fat. What isn’t burned right away through activity will be stored as fat, but that can take a couple of days.

Meanwhile, you have begun the cycle of scale—-> shame—–> punish through restriction, which generally throws you back into a binge cycle which is what started this off in the first place. See how the madness builds?

My point? Chuck the Scale! Weight, while it does have some use, is not necessarily a good predictor of health. Someone with a large amount of muscle versus fat mass will always weigh more. My advice? Base your progress off how your clothes fit and feel. It is a much more accurate indicator and you won’t drive yourself crazy! Otherwise you can set yourself up for emotional eating or binge eating and a whole lot of heartache.

Michelle Lewis

Michelle Lewis

Michelle Lewis has a Bachelor's degree in Psychology from Weber State University and a Master's degree in Social Work from the University of Utah. She has been working in the mental health field since 2001.

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