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Jill Weisenberger, MS, RD, CDE answers the question: Should you weigh?

Weight and height are used in computing body m...

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To weigh or not to weigh – when to use the scale and when not

Jill Weisenberger, author of Diabetes Weight Loss: Week by Week: A Safe, Effective Method for Losing Weight and Improving Your Health and I had a chance to talk about diabetes and weight management. Jill is a registered dietitian and diabetes educator. (To watch the interview, scroll to the bottom or click here.)

Neily: One question that I get a lot is about the scale. What do you answer when somebody says how often should I weigh or even should I weigh?
Jill: That’s another one of those questions that is very personal. Each person is going to answer that differently. You know, for somebody, who gets on that scale and those numbers freak that person out, don’t weigh. It’s ok, don’t weigh. But that’s really unfortunate because we’re not measured by the number on the scale.
Neily: Yeah, it’s not like you’re walking around with the number on your forehead…
Jill: That’s right and that number does not reflect our self worth. So, it is very unfortunate but it does seem to affect quite a number of people. They see a number on the scale, they don’t like it and it upsets them terribly. Those people, I don’t think, should weigh. But if you can look at that number on the scale as something that carries no judgment, it’s just information, it’s okay. The number on the scale is just information that can tell you if you need to make changes or if the plan you are using right now works. You can weigh yourself once a week, twice a week, three times a week, whatever works as long as you can use it as information. As soon as you put judgment on it, then it takes away (the value). The other thing is to pick a scale that is at least close to being accurate. So, this is how I tell people to know their scale is something they can use. Get on it three times, one right after the other and every time the scale should be within a pound of the other measurements you got. So if it is 187 and186 and 187, then it’s a great scale to use. But if it is 187 and 183 and 191, then put that in the garage sale.
Neily: You might have had it stashed away in the closet for a couple of years. So, yes. The digital scales too…I like the digital scales..
Jill: I do too.
Neily: One thing people also ask me is the best time to weigh. I say, first thing in the morning, after you urinate with ideally no clothes on because that’s the time it is most consistent.
Jill: I would agree…
Neily: Some people weigh in the morning and then in the afternoon and it can just be all over the place. So, if they are going to use that…
Jill: Right. Because a big glass of water is going to make a difference.
Neily: Exactly. Excellent. So, again Jill, great to see you. Great talking to you. Jill’s book is Diabetes Weight Loss: Week by Week: A Safe, Effective Method for Losing Weight and Improving Your Health. Thanks for watching Neily on Nutrition.

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