Why does My Weight Fluctuate Daily?
OK so if you’re anything like me and weigh yourself religiously everyday, you probably might be wondering… why does my weight fluctuate so much from day to day?
I know from my own experience, that just a single night of salty snacks and alcohol can cause a weight gain of 1Kg the next day.
So does that mean I’ve put on 1Kg of fat?
The real thing going on here is that under certain conditions the body holds on to more water, and this is called water retention.
Salt is one of the main culprits here, and from my own experience, salted peanuts seem to be especially bad!
All the cells in the body hold a certain amount of water, which is controlled by the relative amounts of salt (sodium) and potassium in the body.
As we eat more salt, the cells in the body absorb more water and we pack on the water weight. This makes us look bigger, feel bloated and we weight more.
A-lot of modern convenience foods come with extra salt to enhance the flavour.
So we can lower our salt intake by eating less pre-packaged foods.
In fact, research into low salts diets discovered that over an 18 months period, it’a possible to lose around 3.9Kg! (1).
Another way to keep the water weight off is to consume more potassium.
Potassium lessens the effect of salt, and helps us to release excess water weight.
Good sources of potassium include avocados, bananas, spinach, sweet potatoes and fish.
As an aside, Cider vinegar famously has some potassium but it’s relatively small when compared with good food sources. However the main benefits of Cider vinegar for weight loss are more likely to be in it’s ability to balance insulin and blood glucose levels (2).
Sugar and Carbohydrates.
White Sugar and Carbohydrate essentially amount to the same thing, and are converted into glycogen, which is a form of stored glucose energy (sugar) in the body.
On average, the body holds a maximum capacity of around 500g of glycogen(3) which is stored in the muscles and the liver. This may not seem much, however the issue is that each gram of glycogen also attracts an extra 3 to 4 grams of water weight.
So when you’ve carbed up on pizza and fries the night before, it’s very easy to discover the next day that you’ve put on an extra 1.5 to 2Kg! Thankfully, most of the time this is simply excess water weight.
However if you eat too many sugars or carbs, and exceed the 500g glycogen storage limit, then this extra energy diverted into the fat cells, to be stored as fat.
The key take-home here is that once the glycogen stores are depleted, we will lose weight as we start to burn fat as an alternative fuel source.
This fat burning process is known as entering ketosis.
Have you ever put on weight after a night of salty snacks? What are your thoughts on fasting?