Nearly everyone is guilty of making a big deal out of weight change. If you go to a party a weekend or have a week long vacation to somewhere, you’ll notice a change in your weight. But does this really mean that you’ve gained weight? Not necessarily. A weight fluctuation around 5 lbs + or – 3 lbs is completely normal. Weight can change even in the course of a day.
Why does weight change? Well, there are a number of factors that play into weight change.
- Water Weight – Depending on how many fluids you’ve consumed within the past couple of hours (or even days) can have a huge affect on your weight. If you’re dehydrated, you’ll probably weigh less than if you’ve just drank a gallon of water (which I would not recommend because you can get water poisoning).
- Food Consumption – Did you eat within the last couple of hours? What kind of food did you eat? I think this one’s pretty obvious. If you just ate, then yes, your weight will increase! Carbohydrates (breads, rices, pastas, fruits, etc.) retain more water. So if your previous meal contained a heavy load of carbs, be prepared to see a larger number on that scale.
- Exercise / Work Out – Most people will gain weight when they exercise. Why? Well, whenever you exercise, you’re breathing in much more oxygen than you do at rest. The body tries to hold as much oxygen it can within the muscles to produce energy when you’re exercising. Also, if you’re drinking water while you exercise, your weight will increase due to the water. Some think it’s counter-intuitive because when you exercise, you are perspiring (sweat) and thus losing water weight; however, the water you’re sweating is not a significant amount of water.
- Clothing – Again, seems obvious. The heavier clothes you’re wearing or the more clothes that you’re wearing, the higher your weight will be.
With that said, if you want to receive a consistent weight reading on a daily basis, I suggest you always weigh yourself at the same time of day (preferably, in the morning before you have consumed any liquids or foods).