Why does body weight fluctuate

For a few days or weeks you have been paying meticulous attention to your diet, changing your habits bit by bit, going to sport regularly and already feeling much better. After a while, you get curious about how much you have already lost. The sobering result on the scales: 1.5 kg increased. You get gasps and would like to throw the whole plan overboard. Self-doubts arise as to whether the concept will be of any use at all. Could one have done more? Less chocolate, more exercise? No. Here we reveal why the weight increases and fluctuates despite dieting!

1. Fluctuating hormones

In order to be able to observe weight fluctuations closely, you should weigh yourself daily and compare the individual cycle weeks with one another. During and after your period, when the level of estrogen rises and is at its maximum at ovulation, the body likes to store water. After ovulation, the progesterone level is increased. This ensures that the water disappears again, but also that you feel uncomfortable before your period. Therefore, compare the average weight of the first week of the cycle with the first week of the next cycle.

What can I do?
Women cannot do anything about cycle-related water retention. Make sure you get enough potassium, found in green vegetables, and drink plenty of water.

2. Exercise and muscles

Work out three times a week and give it your all while exercising, but the next morning the scales show an extra kilo. No reason to panic. It is perfectly normal for you to weigh more the next day, as water is stored in the muscles that are used, and especially when the muscles are sore. After a long time in the gym, it is also possible that muscles have built up. One kilo of muscle mass has a significantly smaller volume than one kilo of fat. You have lost fat and built up muscle, appear significantly slimmer in the mirror, but the scale shows that you are standing still.

What can I do?
Water that accumulates in the muscles usually disappears by itself. Drink enough. That promotes the breakdown. Nevertheless, promote your muscle building. This ensures a firm body and firm tissue. Remember: the number on the scale doesn't matter.

3. Filled glycogen stores

If you eat carbohydrates, the energy is stored in the liver and muscles in the form of glycogen. During sport or physically strenuous work, the body draws on these reserves and empties the glycogen stores. With the glycogen, the body also loses water. An example: the average body stores around that 400 g glycogen. If this is now used, the scale also shows 400 g less. In addition, every gram binds glycogen three grams of waterwhich also comes out of the body. So it can happen that the body shows 1-2 kilos less the next morning. It is exactly the other way around: if you fill your glyogen stores, e.g. with a large portion of potatoes or oat flakes and drink plenty of it, the body stores the water and glycogen in the body again.

What can I do?
Filling and emptying glycogen stores are two completely natural processes in the human body. So if you had a lot of pasta the day before, look in the mirror the next day. The muscles look plumper and the tissue looks tighter. Incidentally, one of the reasons why you sometimes seem sunken while on a diet: your glycogen stores are empty. This happens especially with a low carb diet.

4. Too much salt in the food

Salt binds water in the body. Already 0.9 grams draw 100 ml of water. A certain amount of salt is essential for the body to survive, but the bowl of salted chips or other ready-made meals are then too much of a good thing.

What can I do?
Watch your salt intake. Cook fresh and add salt in an emergency. Cut down on finished products and drink enough!

5. Food volume & intestinal contents

Anyone who eats a kilo of vegetables, potatoes and meat for dinner will see this weight first on the scales. However, it is crucial that the vegetables also contain plenty of water. A full gastrointestinal tract can also cause weight fluctuations, especially if you haven't been able to go to the toilet for a day or two.

What can I do?
Eat enough fiber and drink plenty of it. The fiber swells up in the stomach and supports digestion.