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Weight fluctuation .. it's normal, and here is why

Have you ever wondered why the number on the scale seems never to be consistent? One day you weigh "this amount, and then the next day, it's something else. It may even make you question, have I gained weight? Have I got fat? Have I retained fluid? And always stressing about the number you see on the scale! You can change that perspective on how to view the scale. The scale does not define one's health per se-, but is a tool to help identify patterns that can be referenced over time to check progress.

That being said, if you were to track your weight daily in the morning and evening, you would see a different number every time. That is normal; weight fluctuations occur for many reasons, and we will address at least a few.

  1. Consuming Salty foodsSalt is made up of sodium and chloride, and sodium attracts water. Thus, the more sodium in your blood, the more water you will retain in your blood vessels, which will cause temporary water weight gain due to the water retention.

  2. Carbohydrates – Carbohydrates are a macronutrient from foods like grains, pasta, fruits, and vegetables. Carbohydrates we consume are converted into glucose which circulates in the bloodstream. If glucose is not immediately used, it is converted to glycogen and stored in the liver and muscle. However, for every gram of glycogen comes 3 grams of water, so the more glycogen in your system means more water retention.

  3. Strength Training – Increased muscle mass can cause weight gain as muscles weigh more than fat; weight training can also cause your body to retain water temporarily, mainly if you are new to weight training

  4. ConstipationEverything we consume is used as energy, stored, or excreted from our bodies. Having infrequent bowel movements can happen for various reasons, but you will notice a change in weight if you hop on the scale before and after a bowel movement. If you are not adequately hydrated and your diet lacks fibre, those are two big reasons you may have more frequent bouts of constipation.

  5. Hormonal Changes – Estrogen and progesterone levels fluctuate during the menstrual cycle, affecting water retention, hunger, and energy levels. This can lead to weight gain or loss, depending on the individual. Similarly, during menopause, changes in hormone levels can lead to a decrease in metabolism and an increase in abdominal fat.

All of these examples are things that are a normal part of life. Your weight might fluctuate, but that does not mean you gain fat. These are just temporary changes in your body weight, primarily due to simple fluid shifts. Our bodies are intricate and unique, so many physiological processes are constantly occurring. These temporary weight changes are nothing to stress about.

The scale can be a trigger for many people, and maybe taking a break from using it is healthy for some, but for others, it may be a great tool that you can utilise to keep better track of your weight.

If you're curious to see your weight fluctuation patterns, you could weigh yourself daily in the morning and evening and take your average weight for the week, which is shown to be a more accurate representation of your body weight.

The bottom line is that fluctuation will happen, and there are many reasons for it.

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