Should I use my scale to monitor weight loss?

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F. Michael Gloth, III
Geriatric Medicine
While you can certainly achieve better fitness without it, your scale can be helpful if you use it correctly. It is a useful measure of change, not simply an instrument to measure an endpoint. In other words, don't get caught up in trying to achieve a number on a scale. You are trying to achieve a shift from fat to muscle, which can give you a much better and healthier appearance with only minimal, if any, absolute weight loss. Anyone can lose 5 pounds overnight, but most of the weight lost will be water. Such a loss might be associated with dehydration accompanied by fatigue and a less healthy appearance -- especially for older adults.

Staying focused on your fitness goal with reasonable patience will lead to lasting, healthy results. With this in mind, use your scale as a monitor of progress only when weight loss is desirable and advisable. It should be used to provide a baseline weight as well as encouragement and positive reinforcement. With the proper mindset, your scale will help reduce temptation and be an instrument of support.
Fit at Fifty and Beyond: A Balanced Exercise and Nutrition Program (A DiaMedica Guide to Optimum Wellness)

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Fit at Fifty and Beyond: A Balanced Exercise and Nutrition Program (A DiaMedica Guide to Optimum Wellness)

As people reach their fifties, the body’s metabolism slows. Without a change in eating or exercise habits, it’s common to put on weight and become less able to perform routine physical...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.