Why Does My Body Weight Fluctuate So Much?

| May 28, 2011 | 1 Comment

When you’re trying to lose weight, it’s easy to obsess over the numbers on the bathroom scales as you measure your progress.   But fear not, daily weight fluctuations are nothing to worry about and I guarantee you have not put on more fat overnight.

Small daily variations in scale weight are completely normal.  For example, your weight might increase after a meal, a delay in bowel movement, or during the premenstrual phase in women, and may decrease after exercise from fluid loss associated with sweating or going to the toilet.

If you need more convincing, then consider that one pound  (~½ kilo) of body fat contains  about 3,500 calories (~14,700 kJ) of stored energy.   So in order for you to gain three pounds (1.36 kilos) overnight, you would have to consume an additional 10,500 calories (~44,000 kJ) over and above your usual calorie intake!

Try not to fixate on your daily weight, but if it helps you stay on track, weigh yourself once a week at the same time of day under the same conditions (for example, before exercise and meals) for a more accurate reading.

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Category: Exercise, Health Q&A

About the Author ()

Dr. Bill Sukala is a clinical exercise physiologist, university lecturer, and health writer. He holds a PhD in Exercise Science with a research focus in obesity and type 2 diabetes, a masters degree in Exercise Physiology with an emphasis in cardiology, and a bachelors degree in Nutrition. In his free time, you will find him traveling and surfing around the world! Follow him on Facebook, , and Twitter.

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  1. Ben says:

    I’m so glad I found this article on “Why my weight Fluctuates so much. I’ve been obsessing about this for sometime now and the worry could lead to really not eating right. Thanks for the information.

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