Every female does it.  Whether it’s at a friends house or in the privacy of your own home, none of us can resist a good visit to the scale.  Good being a relative term, that is, based on the results.

When I was struggling with an eating disorder in college, I had to go for weekly weigh-ins.  They used to make me use the scale facing the opposite way to ensure I wasn’t looking at the numbers.  I remember craning my neck to try to see what they wrote down.  Obviously this was during an unhealthy time in my life, but I think all of us get a bit obsessed with the scale read outs.  Opinions have always been mixed on whether or not the scale helps or harms your weight loss program.  Medicine Net has a great summary of the mixed opinions:

“Many popular weight loss plans, such as Weight Watchers, do not recommend weighing yourself daily. Instead, they recommend stepping on the scales once per week or even less frequently. Our weight fluctuates somewhat from day-to-day, and daily weighing can lead to discouragement and potential diet sabotage if you see a higher number on the scale than you saw the day before. Most diet experts believe that a once-weekly or even monthly weigh-in is a more accurate reflection of weight control progress….

But a group of doctors who studied obese and overweight adults who were trying to lose weight as well as overweight adults who were trying to prevent weight gain found that those who weighed themselves more often lost more weight and prevented more weight gain over two years than those who weighed themselves less frequently. Contrary to the advice given in many popular weight loss regimens, this study suggests that at least some people can benefit from the accountability brought on by daily weigh-ins. Potential advantages of daily weighing include recognition of slow patterns of weight gain that may not be immediately apparent and the chance to modify lifestyle habits before the total weight gain becomes extreme and difficult to control.”  –Taken from MedicineNet.com

Recently, I have been stepping on the scale every morning, and I have to say it hasn’t been too bad.  I’m putting more pressure on myself than usual, with the wedding coming up, as normally I only try to weigh in at least once a week.  However, stepping on the scale every day has definitely shown me that we truly do fluctuate on a daily basis, and one day’s worth of numbers isn’t enough to throw in the towel.

If you struggle with body image issues, I don’t recommend the daily weigh in.  Instead, pay attention to how your clothes fit.  That has been a better indication for me of my progress than any scale could ever say.

What do other people do to ensure they’re not becoming obsessed with the numbers?  What other healthy body image tips do you recommend?