Why did the scale go up overnight?!
You’ve been doing everything by the book and were shocked to find out that the scale went up overnight. It’s frustrating and in our bewildered state we overreact and try to over-restrict in an attempt to get back on track.
If you’re following a healthy eating and fitness program, no need to change a thing. A one day fluctuation doesn’t warrant a redesign of our meal plan. After all, gaining a single pound of fat requires consuming about 3,500 calories more than you can burn off. So to gain five pounds in a day, you’d have to eat nearly 20,000 calories in 24 hours.
Here’s what actually happened.
- Your last meal was later than usual. The number you’re seeing could be food mass.
- You crushed it at the gym. After an intense workout that recruits a lot of large muscle groups. The microscopic tears will involve some pooling of fluids around the muscle cell.
- You may have had a meal loaded with sodium. Excess sodium intake leads to immediate water gain.
- We’ve started a high protein, low carb diet. With this we kinda miss out on fiber from whole grains, fruits, and starchy vegetables and will lead us to retain matter.
- You upped your fiber intake too quickly. Fiber is great for you! More fiber will turn into a heavier, bulkier, waterier, and more massive bowel movement.
- We are dehydrated. The lack of water will throw your kidneys into fluid conservation mode.
- You’re constipated.
- Your period is about to start. Women may start to gain water weight about five days before their cycle. This hormonal shift will compel women to reach for saltier foods which could result in excessive water weight.
- You had an increase in carbohydrates. We are going to emphasize the “hydrate” part here, one gram of this macronutrient (stored as glycogen) retains three grams of WATER. If you follow a low carb diet in general and reached for an extra piece of bread last night, water could be driving that number up in the morning.
The scale is one of many tools to help measure our progress, it’s not the only one we should rely on. A great use of your time and energy is being paired with one of our nutrition coaches who can help guide you through building better habits.