Why You Should Weigh Yourself Infrequently (And Never on a Monday)

by The Health Sciences Academy — Get free science updates here.

With regard to the weight of our human body, there are pretty much three segments of people:

  1. those who maintain,
  2. those who gain, and
  3. those who lose.

It’s those who want to be in that last category that are jumping on the scale too frequently. And notice I said want to be. That’s the key word.

So let’s back up for a moment and be very direct.

Weigh yourself infrequently…

…and stay off the scale on a Monday.


Well, think about it. How do your weekends go?

Something like, you have more time and you go out to eat more often, splurging on things that you may not during the week.

Can you relate to that?

If you overindulge on the weekends and belly up to the scale on the following Monday (or even on the Sunday), you are going to be disappointed.

In a study about “weight rhythms”, that’s exactly what the research at Cornell University (in collaboration with researchers from the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Tampere University of Technology) told us. Your weight is typically at the highest point after weekends, on Sunday and Monday. And here’s a cool infographic detailing the summary of that study.

It’s as if you cram your pleasures, have tos, want tos and oh-what-the-hells into those 48 hours. Even the best laid out routine can fall to pieces then. As a whole people tend to be less consistent with everything on the weekends.

So what should you do?

In two words: Ease up.

There’s no need to beat yourself up if you’ve splurged on the weekend. But also make it a promise to yourself to stay off the scale on a Monday. As a matter of fact, consider staying off the scale completely until you feel like you have moved in a negative-digit direction. And that leads us to the good news.

Friday is the best time to weigh yourself

Not only that, but even better is this:

What you do during the week will set you apart weight wise from what you splurge on during the weekend.

Long-term habits may make more of a difference than short-term splurges, says Dr. Brian Wansink from Cornell University. You are most likely to lose weight if you focus on what you eat during the week (i.e. Monday to Friday).

In that above-named study, the participants who succeeded in losing weight and keeping it off were those who keyed in on healthy eating habits during the week and compensated more strictly from Monday to Friday for a weekend gain.

That also means there’s no need to weigh yourself frequently.

Pay attention to the habits you install during the week. Be diligent and consistent, and notice the rhythms of your eating patterns. One really big consideration is to pay mind to your health behaviours. This is why behavioural psychology is at the core of what we teach in our Advanced Clinical Weight Loss Practitioner certification.

Healthy weight control behaviours can impact nutrient intakes

There is actually a substantial amount of evidence that points towards the science of weight management and how it can be better viewed thorough a paradigm shift. That shift includes the adoption of healthy behaviours with regard to eating habits and dietary quality combined with self-esteem and body image.

Your weight can fluctuate 4 pounds (2 kilos) in a single day. With that in mind, it makes no sense (nonsense) to frequent the scale on a daily basis. This nonsense can add to the games we play with ourselves with regard to how we feel about ourselves and how we judge our success.

Consider weigh-ins once a week – at the very most bi-weekly – and do it at the same time with the same level of hydration.

Remember: there are weight loss cycles

Almost everyone loses weight on weekdays and gains weight on weekends. It’s very similar to our sleep. We don’t sleep the exact same way every night. Weight loss cycles will vary just like our sleep cycles. There are plenty of factors that affect our human bodies on daily basis that determine both of these cycles.

What separates the thinner people from the heavier isn’t how much more they gain on weekends, but how much they lose during the week days.

To have your best success in losing weight, notice your own rhythms.

Take the initiative to reverse the upward trends after the weekend, even if it has to wait until Monday. Better success is more likely to happen for the long run if you allow for short-term splurges and aren’t so harsh on yourself.

So, how frequently do you weigh yourself and why?

Do you notice a difference in how you feel after the weekend vs. during the week?

Share your thoughts in the comments below.  We’d love to hear from you. Oh, and if you know someone who is a “daily weigher”, pass this along to them for encouragement!

Related Certifications:

Join one of our accredited certifications today. Learn the latest science and get certified.

Advanced Clinical Weight Loss Practitioner Certification

The-Health-Sciences-Academy-Alejandra-Ruani-small1-right Alex Ruani, Doctoral Researcher, is the Chief Science Educator at The Health Sciences Academy, where her team of accomplished scientists and PhDs are training a new breed of over 100,000 highly-specialised nutrition professionals who are leveraging the latest personalisation strategies to help their clients. She is a Harvard-trained scientist and UCL Doctoral Researcher who is fanatical about equipping health professionals with the latest science-based tools so they can succeed in their practices – from identifying the unique nutrient needs to building highly personalised nutrition programs. Besides investigating and teaching the latest advances in health and nutrition biochemistry, Alex makes it easier to be smarter with her free email updates.

Did you enjoy this? Sign up to receive our FREE email updates!

See Also

Continuing Education Bundle

Free Academic Tour

Exclusive Webinar

[CPD Certified Webinar] Child and Family Nutrition Strategies for Your Practice

“How do I know if my child is getting all the right nutrients for proper growth?”

 “Should I worry about feeding my kids the wrong foods for learning and mood control?”

“Our family dinner is a tantrum-loaded warzone… is picky eating solvable at all?”

Speech challenges, learning delays, stunted growth, irrational tantrums, short-fused aggression, hyperactivity, a lack of attention… they can all have a dietary element underneath.

What a little boy or little girl eats can deeply affect their mood, memory, and brain development – with long-lasting consequences carried into adulthood.

So how does diet shape a growing child? And in what ways may you help parents, caretakers, and teachers with the nutrition of little ones?

Completing this CPD-certified training will equip you with vital knowledge underpinning how food can impact your client’s child neurologically, emotionally, and intellectually – alongside insights about adequately running child nutrition programs to best support little boys and girls with their developmental needs.

Here’s what you will discover in this CPD Certified Webinar:

  • Why nutrition and health practitioners should gain a deep insight into child nutrition science when working with parents, caretakers, and teachers
  • Importance of custom-building child nutrition plans considering gender, age, height, weight, and other calculations
  • How adding child nutrition programs to your practice can help clients with the developmental needs of their little ones
  • Advantages of becoming an Advanced Child and Brain Development Nutritional Advisor™ and integrating child nutrition into your work with our Level 5 Certification
  • Personalisation methods and planning tools to use when running your own child nutrition programs to support parents, caretakers, sports clubs, and schools

Remember you have the option of claiming your smart CPD certificate when you complete this webinar!

Register Now

© Copyright

Everything on this site is original content, created and owned by or through The Health Sciences Academy ® or licensed accordingly.
© Copyright The Health Sciences Academy. The content, graphs and charts on this page have been exclusively prepared for The Health Sciences Academy and its prospect students, existing students and graduates. None of the content on this page and website may be reproduced, copied or altered without our explicit permission. Criminal and legal penalties for copyright and other infringement apply. All Terms and Conditions apply.
The Health Sciences Academy is the world’s largest, 100% science-based, online educational institution.
✔ helping health professionals build their expertise in specialised areas
✔ raising industry standards througah personalised nutrition and practical science.
© Copyright The Health Sciences Academy. The content, graphs and charts on this page have been exclusively prepared for The Health Sciences Academy and its prospect students, existing students and graduates. None of the content on this page and website may be reproduced, copied or altered without our explicit permission. Criminal and legal penalties for copyright and other infringement apply. All Terms and Conditions apply.


Free Courses



About Us

© 2022 The Health Sciences Academy ® All Rights Reserved.

Send this to a friend