Why Weighing Yourself is Bullshit

By Sarah Jenks

The walk from your bedroom to the bathroom in the morning can feel like a death march.  Not because you need to navigate the shoes strewn across your floor or avoid ramming your calf on the corner of your coffee table in a dark sleepy haze, but at the end of the perilous path, your biggest critic awaits to determine your sense of self-worth for the day – your scale.  As you stand in the bathroom, you start removing every article of clothing.  You peel off your camisole and shorts, your underwear, even your rings and earrings. Oddly, this is probably the only time of day when you are truly naked.  It’s just you and your body.  And instead of feeling strong, beautiful and empowered, you feel vulnerable and judged.

But there is something very wrong with this picture, because the scale really doesn’t reveal anything of value.

First, the scale lies.  The number can fluctuate a lot in a 24-hour period.  Things like what you ate the night before, how much water you drank, where you are in your cycle, if you worked out or not , all effect the number, but have nothing to do with your health.  Not even to mention that muscle weighs a lot more than fat (and it’s fit and strong we’re going for here, not an arbitrary number on a scale).

Second, the best judge of how healthy you are is how you feel.  Think about it: your scale can’t tell you how you slept last night, how you felt after Chinese take-out, or how clear your skin is.  These are all true signs of health. Tune into how you feel while you are eating, working out and living your life- your body will communicate health by your energy, ability to sleep, skin quality, and mood.  The more you rely on your body as your wellness-scale, the more you will be able to receive these messages of wellbeing.

My advice to you?  Take steps to wean yourself off of the scale.  The number on it means nothing. It is not an indicator of how you feel or how you look. It tells you nothing of importance. If you weigh yourself everyday, stop. Try instead to weigh yourself just once a week.  If you weigh yourself every week, try cutting back to once a month.  And if you really want to cultivate health in your life and develop a positive, trusting relationship with your body- just throw it away.  I promise – you will be far better off without it.

In the morning, go through this routine instead: undress and stand in front of your mirror and tell yourself you look beautiful (even if you don’t believe it at first).  Admire and adore your body.  Now hop into the shower feeling empowered, sexy and healthy – just as you are.

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