The right way to weigh yourself

February 13, 2018 by Julie Davis, Healthday Reporter

(HealthDay)—The scale can be your best friend—or your worst enemy—when you're on a diet.

But whether or not you like what you see, a isn't the only—or the best—way to track your progress. Rather than looking for a particular number on a scale, measure success in more meaningful ways.

Changes in your , or BMI (a ratio of your weight and height), is one good indicator. Use an to plug in your stats. As your weight drops, you should see your BMI go down, too. Note that a normal BMI range is between 18.5 and 24.9, while 25 to 29.9 indicates overweight, and 30 or greater signals obesity.

Because a large waist circumference puts you at greater risk of diabetes, heart disease and other health problems, you can also chart your progress with a tape measure. Use it to track the inches around your chest, hips, thighs, calves and upper arms, as well as your middle.

How your clothes fit is an easy way to know if you're dropping pounds. Grab a tight pair of pants from your closet and try them on every two weeks, noting any changes.

If you're still focused on using the scale, make your weight-loss expectations a realistic one-half to one pound a week, to avoid being discouraged by the number you see.

Also, keep in mind that Monday isn't the best day for a weigh-in. Because people tend to eat more on the weekends and less during the week, Friday morning is a better time to get on the scale.

Explore further: Ways to track weight loss success

More information: The U.S. National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute has an easy-to-use online BMI calculator that you can even download to your smartphone.

Related Stories

Ways to track weight loss success

May 23, 2017
(HealthDay)—Self-monitoring is part of virtually every weight loss plan, and weighing yourself is a key part of self-monitoring. After all, the one thing every dieter wants to see is results.

BMI is underestimating obesity in Australia, waist circumference needs to be measured too

December 20, 2017
A new study has found the waistlines of Australian adults are increasing faster than body weight.

Readjusting calorie consumption as you lose weight

January 12, 2018
(HealthDay)—If you find that your weekly weight loss is slowing down, maybe it's time to readjust your calorie intake.

Study: Even the normal-weight should watch that apple shape

November 9, 2015
A pot belly can be a bad thing—even if you're not considered overweight.

Weight-loss surgery alone won't keep the pounds off

January 30, 2018
(HealthDay)—If you think your battle against obesity ends on the operating table, you're mistaken.

Five steps to get back on the diet track after the holidays

January 2, 2018
(HealthDay)—Even though successful dieters work harder than non-dieters at maintaining their weight over the holidays, they often face more weight gain than thinner people. And gaining weight often goes on for another month ...

Recommended for you

Bid to beat obesity focuses on fat that keeps us warm

May 24, 2018
A new technique to study fat stores in the body could aid efforts to find treatments to tackle obesity.

Antidepressant use may contribute to long-term population weight gain

May 24, 2018
Researchers at King's College London have found that patients prescribed any of the 12 most commonly used antidepressants were 21% more likely to experience an episode of gain weight than those not taking the drugs, (after ...

Can excess weight in toddlers cause brain drain?

May 23, 2018
(HealthDay)—Extra pounds in early childhood may do more than put a child's physical health at risk—they might result in a slightly lower IQ, new research suggests.

Early-life obesity impacts children's learning and memory, study suggests

May 23, 2018
A new study by Brown University epidemiologists found that children on the threshold of obesity or overweight in the first two years of life had lower perceptual reasoning and working memory scores than lean children when ...

Some calories more harmful than others

May 15, 2018
While calories from any food have the potential to increase the risk of obesity and other cardiometabolic diseases, 22 nutrition researchers agree that sugar-sweetened beverages play a unique role in chronic health problems. ...

Fat cells seem to remember unhealthy diet

April 23, 2018
It only takes 24 hours for a so-called precursor fat cell to reprogram its epigenetic recipe for developing into a fat cell. This change occurs when the cell is put into contact with the fatty acid palmitate or the hormone ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.