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Do you allow a number on your bathroom scale to make or break your day? Wouldn't it be absurd to let the temperature, the date or the Dow-Jones determine how you feel about yourself or how your day will go? They're all just numbers but for some women, weight has the power to change your mood and ruin your morning.  

The scale does not measure your self-worth. It simply measures the weight of your tissues (including bones, muscle and fat) and substances that are just passing through (like water, food and waste). Weight can fluctuate dramatically depending on time of day, hormones, when you last ate and other factors – none of which have anything to do with your value as a person.  

To make matters worse, weighing yourself can backfire. Have you ever said...
• I did so well this week. I deserve a treat!
• I was so good but I didn't lose any weight. I might as well eat.
• I don't have to weigh in until next week so I'll splurge now and make up for it later.
• I was terrible this week and I still lost weight. I guess I don't need to be as careful as I thought.
• I only lost a half a pound. It wasn't worth it.

A scale is an external device that doesn't accurately measure what's going on inside your body or your head. If you've been consumed by the numbers, skip the scale for awhile – and remember, meaningful change takes place from the inside out.

Michelle May, M.D.
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