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Giving Good Weigh-In Advice

The first tale in John McPhee’s 1979 book, Giving Good Weight details the life of local area farmers who bring their goods to New York City’s Green markets. Here, “Giving good weight,” means the farmers are giving you a good, square deal -- and that’s just what you want.

But despite headlines about a study in the journal Obesity that claimed weighing yourself daily is the best way to lose weight and keep it off, we think for most people, that’s not giving good weight control advice.

Weighing yourself every day may end up backfiring, making it harder to stick with your weight loss and exercise plan. Studies show that for some folks, a daily weigh-in can even be terrorizing; that daily confrontation can fuel depression. And a daily weigh-in may make you fixate on every fluctuation (weight can go up and down during the day) and make you feel like a failure when you don’t see positive results.

Your weight can fluctuate depending on whether you’ve gone to the bathroom or not and if you drank water when you woke up. And you should only expect to lose between ½ and 2 pounds a week over the long haul. So here’s a better idea.

Pick one time during the week – say Wednesday, right before dinner – for your weight check. Use the same scale and wear similar clothes. That can give you an accurate snapshot of how you’re doing. You’ll be giving yourself good weight info and that’s a square deal.