Research: Yet more research supporting regular self-weighing

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Persistent self-weighing is one key means to increase the success of successful weight loss and maintenance.

Scale and Tape Measure
Scale and Tape Measure

Self-monitoring of weight loss success is long suspected to be a successful method for increasing the efficacy of your weight loss plans. In fact, I have written several articles on this very topic and most have confirmed that self-weighing frequency is associated with increased weight loss and improved maintenance once it is lost.

It is believed that self-weighing may promote the attainment and maintenance of a healthy weight. This might be due to increased mindfulness of one’s current status or weight. It might also be due to the fact that people who weight themselves every day may place increased importance on living more healthy.

A new research study took a slightly different approach to this question. Research in 2019 looked at the natural temporal patterns and factors associated with self-weighing behavior and how they might impact successful weight loss​[1]​. They looked to identify distinct temporal patterns of self-weighing behaviors, explore factors associated with temporal self-weighing patterns, and examine differences in percent weight changes by patterns of self-weighing over time.

The study was performed by analyzing electronically collected self-weighing data from the Health eHeart Study. The researchers selected participants with at least 12 months of data since the day of the first use of a WiFi- or Bluetooth-enabled digital scale. The participants totaled 1041 and were predominantly overweight white males. The researchers found six self-weighing temporal patterns. They include non-users, weekly users, rapid decliners, increasing users, slow decliners, and persistent daily users. The researchers found that the group that persistently weighed themselves daily were more likely to lose more weight. This group also was more likely to be female and older.

If you want more information on self-weighing behavior and weight loss, I recommend you read the following posts:

  1. Research: Is effective weight-loss strategy too difficult? A post about self-monitoring as the best approach to weight loss.
  2. Research: Do smart scales work for weight loss? Research about smart scales as a way to help weight loss. m
  3. Research: What makes a difference in weight loss? Another post about the research backing self-monitoring with weighing.
  4. Research: Daily trips to the scale may prevent obesity. Research backing daily weighing to assist with weight loss.
  5. Myth: Daily weighing will inhibit weight loss. Debunking the myth that weighing daily will worsen weight gain.

The bottom line: Persistent daily users lost more weight compared with groups with less frequent patterns of scale use. It is clear that daily weighing the key to losing and maintaining weight loss. I suggest you buy a smart scale.

  1. [1]
    Y. Zheng et al., “Temporal patterns of self-weighing behavior and weight changes assessed by consumer purchased scales in the Health eHeart Study,” J Behav Med, pp. 873–882, Jan. 2019 [Online]. Available: http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10865-018-00006-z
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About the Author

ChuckH
I am a family physician who has served in the US Army. In 2016, I found myself overweight, out of shape, and unhealthy, so I made a change to improve my health. This blog is the chronology of my path to better health and what I have learned along the way.

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