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Old 04-27-2013, 05:01 AM   #1
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I'm not really convinced....

I have been losing weight now for about 3 years steadily but it hasn't really followed a linear pattern. I am going on about a 55lb loss to date, and am probably down to my last 3lbs before hitting my goal which will be the bottom end of the desirable BMI for my stats and frame size.

But here is the thing. Although I think the body fat has been decreasing steadily the weight on the scale hasn't shown this same pattern. In fact my scale weight has jumped all over the place. I can go almost 2 months without seeing a loss of 1lb on the scale, and yet I will try on a piece of clothing that used to fit me and I am swimming in it.

A couple of strange things I have noticed. Once was a 10lb increase in my weight over a two week period that occurred after adding more fiber in my diet. And another time I had a long stall that lasted two months where there was no change in my scale weight but it turned out I had gained bodyfat. This occurred during the fall. I also notice that I never lose any scale weight over the winter, but a lot during the summer.

This leads me to thinking. I am not convinced that scale weight is a good measure of weight loss at all. It makes sense that a downward trend in scale weight can measure success over a number of years that is true; after all three years ago I weighted a lot more on the bathroom scale than I do now. But I don't think the scale is really a good way of accessing how much body fat you are actually losing in the short term. In Gary Taubes book he discusses how fat mobilization is dynamic, meaning your adipose cells are constantly releasing and storing fat all the time, with the most lipophilic tissues being the most inactive that way.

So is it possible that one has to think of body fat as more than just permanent deposits of extra weight that you have to unload to reduce your overall size. And that extra weight might be due to the actual number of storage cells you have in your body to accommodate the excess amount of nutrients coming into the body that are the result of extra eating. Ie. fat, carbs, protein, water, fiber etc. Body fat is just one of these excess nutrients. In other words if one thinks of these extra storage cells as empty containers and the incoming nutrients as different coloured blocks, when one over-eats they introduce these storage containers to a bunch of blocks. These containers will fill up with whatever you are taking into your body in excess. Sometimes it is water, sometimes it is fat, sometimes it is carbs, sometimes protein. These containers just fill up with whatever is excess at any given moment, until the body needs it for something or decides to dump it.

So I think might explain things like a 3lb weight gain over night. Or a long stall and then suddenly loses a couple of pounds over night. Water does weigh more than fat, when comparing volume, so if the cells (storage containers) are filling up with water instead of fat, you could actually weigh more! I read somewhere that the number of storage cells you have in your body doesn't actually decrease when you lose weight, so if they fill up with water you could actually weigh more even though you have lost body fat.

Just something I was thinking about. And the reason is that I haven't lost a pound of scale weight in 3 months and yet when I tried on one of my workout outfits yesterday (that I haven't had on since December), they didn't fit me. That is very weird, because I didn't think I had lost any body fat since Christmas. And yet, I must have. I thought I would share that in case there is anyone out there really stressed about stalls and stalling

Last edited by Punkin; 04-27-2013 at 05:04 AM..
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Old 04-27-2013, 05:36 AM   #2
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Someone on the JUDDD board compared losing weight to a ball bouncing down the stairs....it's up and down but the general trend is down.
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Old 04-27-2013, 06:20 AM   #3
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Taubes talks about how muscle tissue is denser than fat, so if you exercise and build muscle you will lose inches while increasing weight. Then, there is that long pipe of a digestive systen that temporarily stores stuff, and the blood quantity that becimes thicker or thinner as we drink, sweat, and pee. Tain't all stored in the "fat cell bank". Them old scales don't know the difference between water, fat, muscle, or poo. Its just weight to them dumb old scales so it does the yoyo trick just to keep us off balance. Sometimes seems like a conspiracy designed just to irritate us poor dieters.
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Old 04-27-2013, 07:05 AM   #4
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I am not weighing myself at all. Not saying I won't, but for now I can feel my clothes getting looser and that's good enough. When out worked out regularly with weights (could stand to get back into that habit), I was told that I could see no weight losses and that was the case. I had to really exercise to move the scales a little bit. But I was in good condition. Alas things have changed over 15-20 years!

I also observed many years ago before I had a weight problem that my lowest weight was always in August. My guess is that had with the hot weather, more natural opportunties for exercise, and lots of yummy produce ready available. I am in a northern clime and I believe I am very much tied into the seasonal changes. I need to start mentally preparing for next winter right now!!
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Old 04-27-2013, 07:46 AM   #5
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I would agree that if a person weighs daily (or even weekly as I do), the scale may not reflect exact weight loss because of all the variables involved. That's why I began recording my weight each week on a calendar--so that I could observe the trends over time. My weight dropped each week, so I knew that fidelity to my WOE was reaping results. The exact number wasn't important--it was the steady loss that was significant to me.

Now that I've been maintaining for 2 years, I can sometimes be "up" 2 lbs, but if I know that I have been consistent in my eating plan, I usually see those 2 lbs vanish with no effort on my part. I realize that I just happened to weigh at a time when my body was retaining water (which is hormonally driven in women).

The variables are impossible to predict. For example, last week, I had a doctor's appointment, and in the past his scale and mine have correlated. I weighed myself that morning, and since my appointment was not until noon, I was sure that my 'mid-day' weight would be up 2 lbs or so because that has been the typical pattern, and it doesn't concern me. But I was actually 2 lbs LESS this time.

That's why it's useless to panic over apparent 'gains' of 1-3 lbs (unless they last over time) because water fluctuations, etc. are going on all the time in our bodies.

Our daily weight is NOT an absolute number--ever. All we can do is try to achieve a desired weight and remain within 2-3 lbs of that number. I know that my scale is the most valuable asset to me in monitored my weight.
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Old 04-27-2013, 09:02 AM   #6
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I have always been skeptical of the idea that I would be one of those who could see no weight change on the scale while still seeing losses in inches because I weigh daily and have a whole wardrobe of sizes to use as gauges and I've never had that happen --- until now.

In the last month or so the scale has held very steady and I assumed I had hit my goal and was prepared to call it day. I have a number of clothing items that I realized I might not get into --- my waist is just a little bit bigger than it was when I wore them before, even though they fit everywhere else. The body does change with age and I figured, "whatever."

But a funny thing happened. I was trying them on one last time before I sent to them to Goodwill and lo and behold, they fit! I have changed absolutely nothing in my daily food intake or my exercise routine in the last month. And yet, it's obvious that my body has changed. I thought it might be just a redistribution of fat but when I measured I see no increase of inches anywhere else and the clothes aren't tighter in some places where they were loose before. I don't know where that extra waist girth went, but it's gone.

So, I'm a believer now. With a bunch of new clothes to wear.
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Old 04-27-2013, 10:06 AM   #7
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Thank you for your post. My weight has come off very slowly and have been doing this WOE since last June. I keep telling my family i am not going to quit this way of eating and that i should get to goal in a couple of years.lol It's much better to be stalled for long periods of time than the path i was on previously. And i feel so much better,but does get discouraging at times. So thank you for your sharing!
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Old 04-27-2013, 11:18 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Punkin View Post
I read somewhere that the number of storage cells you have in your body doesn't actually decrease when you lose weight, so if they fill up with water you could actually weigh more even though you have lost body fat.
The number of fat cells can decrease, the process is called "apoptosis" and refers to the "death" of cells in the human body. There's actually a recent journal overview of the pathways of fat cell apoptosis:
Apoptotic pathways in adipose tissue.
Apoptotic pathways in adipose tissue. [Apoptosis. 2013] - PubMed - NCBI
Reductions in fat mass in the human body typically reflect a general decrease in fat cell size, rather than the actual elimination of fat cells. This is one of the more important survival mechanisms in the human body, because maintaining a consistent number of fat cells helps the body better regulate energy storage. When excess energy is available as storage, the body doesn't have to expend a portion of the additional energy in order to store the excess for future use. So it's easier to maintain size stasis when the number of fat cells remains consistent.

As a result of this mechanism, most people who achieve a smaller body size through fat loss have not significantly reduced their number of fat cells but have reduced the size of their existing fat cells. The mechanisms are quite complicated, so the process is very often overly simplified in language that suggests there is no way to reduce the number of fat cells in the human body. But this over-simplification is inaccurate. Studies show that hormonal recalibrations that occur as the result of massive reductions in bodyfat mass -- especially the changes in the action of leptin -- can induce fat cell apoptosis.

Unfortunately, the most revealing studies have been done on rats. Intentionally inducing fat cell death in humans causes a lot of dangerous health problems, so it's one of those areas where medical ethics limits the ability to do intensive research on human beings.
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Old 04-27-2013, 01:04 PM   #9
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That's interesting. And do they know if everyone is the same in terms of weight gain? In other words, does everyone create new fat cells when they gain weight or do some of us simply expand the ones we already have. Or is it a combination?

It seems to me that this has interesting implications for how hard it is to maintain a weight loss.

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Old 04-28-2013, 11:08 AM   #10
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That's interesting. And do they know if everyone is the same in terms of weight gain? In other words, does everyone create new fat cells when they gain weight or do some of us simply expand the ones we already have. Or is it a combination?

It seems to me that this has interesting implications for how hard it is to maintain a weight loss.
That is EXACTLY why "adipocyte apoptosis" (the programmed death of fat cells) is like the Holy Grail of obesity research. There doesn't (yet) seem to be a practical way to manipulate the process, but an effective method of doing it could positively change the maintenance outlook for people who can successfully reduce their bodyfat mass.

It's not actually that difficult to get research subjects to lose weight -- almost everybody loses weight under supervised, clinical conditions -- researchers simply control what their study subjects are eating and the subjects lose weight. There are very few exceptions to this. But *statistically*, nobody actually maintains their weight loss -- it's a huge success if 5% of the people who have lost weight can maintain their loss for 1 year. There are a lot of complicated reasons for this -- which I think all of us who are dieting can relate to -- but one of the physical reasons is that fat cells are very flexible and can refill and expand as easily as they can empty portions of their fuel stores and decrease. So finding a safe and effective way to reduce the overall number of fat cells as part of a weight-reducing program could (maybe) provide better maintenance results.

But there are a lot of problems with intentionally inducing fat cells to die. For one thing, it's much easier to get the number of fat cells to multiply than it is to get that number to decrease. The body keeps a certain amount of material in the form of "preadipocytes," which are not *yet* fat storage cells, but these cells are activated to become fully formed fat storage cells when their development is stimulated by the release of certain hormones and enzymes that come from fat tissue when the membranes of a certain percentage of existing fat cells become stretched beyond a particular point. Basically, if a human fills his or her fat cells beyond a certain point, new fat cells are produced. The rate at which this occurs depends on genetics and current body composition.

However, fat cells can reduce to a fraction of their size and still remain intact. Just getting fat cells to become smaller, emptying out most of their stored fuel, isn't enough to get fat cells to actually disintegrate and die. Basically, there's a limit on how *large* fat cells can become but much less of a limit on how *small* they can become.

Fat cells die as a result of specific hormonal signaling, not simply as a result of low fuel levels. Studies on rats and pigs show that injecting the hormone "leptin" directly into the brain induces adipocyte apoptosis:
Brain administration of leptin causes deletion of adipocytes by apoptosis.
Brain administration of leptin causes deletion... [Endocrinology. 1998] - PubMed - NCBI

Leptin-induced adipose apoptosis: Implications for body weight regulation.
Leptin-induced adipose apoptosis: Implications for... [Apoptosis. 2003] - PubMed - NCBI
Although, there is some doubt as to how actively leptin deletes mature fat cells, as opposed to preadipocytes:
Effects of leptin on apoptosis and adipogenesis in 3T3-L1 adipocytes
ScienceDirect.com - Biochemical Pharmacology - Effects of leptin on apoptosis and adipogenesis in 3T3-L1 adipocytes
I've also read a study overview in China, in which the researchers looked at ways to use traditional Chinese medicine to induce adipocyte apoptosis:
Targeting adipocyte apoptosis: a novel strategy for obesity therapy.
Targeting adipocyte apoptosis: a ... [Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2012] - PubMed - NCBI
But studies in which researchers inject leptin directly into human brains to study adipocyte apoptosis isn't likely to happen. Manipulating the hormones in the human brain to test a fat loss theory is a type of violation that isn't likely to be practiced on humans. Plus, leptin interacts with neurotransmitter hormones, particularly dopamine, and manipulating that balance could cause a variety of emotional and mental problems. And even if leptin injections into human brains was found to be a safe and effective way to help people lose bodyfat and maintain their losses, it isn't a practical or marketable solution because consumers aren't likely to get brain injections just to lose weight.

Also, inducing fat cell death in humans (outside the body's normal processes) can lead to extremely dangerous medical problems, most notably a dramatic increase in "ectopic" fat deposits. Ectopic fat deposits are accumulations of fatty acids outside the fat cells -- the fatty acids become stored in the organs and in tissues that typically contain very small amounts of fat -- and these deposits tend to cluster in ways that lead to a dramatically increased risk of serious cardiovascular problems. One of the reasons extremely obese individuals have significantly higher rates of cardiovascular incidents is at least partly because they have much higher levels of ectopic fat deposits, like fat around the heart, fatty livers, and fatty pancreases.

Changes in the level of stored bodyfat and changes in the amount of feeding naturally influence the action of leptin in the human body, which plays a role in adipocyte apoptosis. So fat cell death has been "observed" in human subjects but manipulating the system is a lot more complicated. The studies listed above cite various research in which drugs (other than leptin) have been used to "mimic" the action of leptin and induce adipocyte apoptosis. Beyond that, though, there doesn't (yet) seem to be a practical application of this principle in human bodies.
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Old 04-28-2013, 12:29 PM   #11
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The scale has nothing at all to do with fat loss. It only shows total weight at any given moment. This is not a new idea; it is fact.

Scale weight should not be used as a measure of fat loss and weight should not be a goal - yet it is the only measure of success most people use.
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Old 04-28-2013, 01:41 PM   #12
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That is EXACTLY why "adipocyte apoptosis" (the programmed death of fat cells) is like the Holy Grail of obesity research. There doesn't (yet) seem to be a practical way to manipulate the process, but an effective method of doing it could positively change the maintenance outlook for people who can successfully reduce their bodyfat mass.
That's fascinating. I had, of course, heard of leptin and its implications but I hadn't heard it discussed in this context. Thanks.
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Old 04-28-2013, 01:57 PM   #13
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@Trillex. Thanks so much for your responses on here. I think you just gave every person who has lost a lot of weight on here, hope that they can once again return to having a normal body, even if that process has to occur slowly over time. I used to have so much fat stored in my thighs that I now have all of this loose saggy skin just hanging off them and it isn't very attractive. I know it is just fat cells that have lost a lot of their shape, but I am hoping some day they will die off and my legs will look somewhat normal again. I had read somewhere that I was stuck with them for life and I am afraid of having surgery.
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Old 04-28-2013, 03:27 PM   #14
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I look at it like this: take a long ballon, fill it with water. In its long regular shape it weight it. Then twist it around the middle, the shape is different, better looking but it still weighs the same. sometimes thats what happens with our bodies, we do loose fat but gain muscle/shape so it equals out the same on the scale. The best measure is a tape measure and how you look and feel in clothing (or nakie)
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Old 04-28-2013, 03:35 PM   #15
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The scale has nothing at all to do with fat loss. It only shows total weight at any given moment. This is not a new idea; it is fact.

.
that is way too simplistic of a statement. The scale has plenty to do with fat loss because it actually shows it. Of course it's not perfect- it measures everything in your body, everyone knows that. But, tape measures and clothing sizes and clothing are far from perfect as well. Tape measures can be pulled tighter or looser, lower or higher, clothing sizes are a joke- clothes keep getting bigger while sizes get smaller, and clothing can be shrunk or gets big as the day goes on.

If you are losing weight (fat), it will show on the scale. And, if someone does tons of weight lifting and is gaining large amounts of muscle then they obviously know what their exercise regimen is like, but the majority of people are not working out at all or anywhere near as strenuously.

Weight was my goal, because clothing sizes can't be relied on and I knew that I wasn't going to work out hard enough to gain tons of muscle.
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Old 04-28-2013, 04:21 PM   #16
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Actually, if you're eating at a caloric deficit to lose weight, you can't gain muscle--that requires an excess of food. What we do when we work out while we're losing weight is develop existing muscle--which helps us 'look' leaner--but it doesn't add pounds. It's new muscle (such as body builders gain) that adds pounds and that requires eating excess calories that the body can use to develop new muscle.

As I developed muscle definition from resistance work in maintenance, I didn't gain or lose any pounds on the scale.
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Old 04-28-2013, 05:15 PM   #17
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Actually, if you're eating at a caloric deficit to lose weight, you can't gain muscle--that requires an excess of food. What we do when we work out while we're losing weight is develop existing muscle--which helps us 'look' leaner--but it doesn't add pounds. It's new muscle (such as body builders gain) that adds pounds and that requires eating excess calories that the body can use to develop new muscle.

As I developed muscle definition from resistance work in maintenance, I didn't gain or lose any pounds on the scale.
thanks for the clarification, which just further shows how consistent scale loss is really fat loss for almost everyone, unless someone is habitually undereating protein and losing muscle as well.

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Old 04-28-2013, 05:17 PM   #18
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Actually, if you're eating at a caloric deficit to lose weight, you can't gain muscle--that requires an excess of food. What we do when we work out while we're losing weight is develop existing muscle--which helps us 'look' leaner--but it doesn't add pounds. It's new muscle (such as body builders gain) that adds pounds and that requires eating excess calories that the body can use to develop new muscle.

As I developed muscle definition from resistance work in maintenance, I didn't gain or lose any pounds on the scale.

I have absolutely gained muscle mass while losing weight.
This is based on measurements, substantial and steady increases in strength, and the mirror. My lc woe is not specifically directed toward calorie loss so I don't measure calories, but I eat way less than I used to (ketosis=reduced appetite) so I'm sure my calories have been reduced while I have gained muscle and lost weight as per the bathroom scale.
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Old 04-28-2013, 05:47 PM   #19
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Body recomposition is a strange process. I use DEXA scans because I have found the bathroom scale to be pretty useless in tracking changes. It could be because I am trying to lose body fat and build muscle at the same time. If I was using the bathroom scale as a benchmark for success, I would given up a long time ago. What is more motivating is going into your closet and picking out an outfit and realizing that it is no longer flattering on you, because it bags and sags in all the wrong places. I used to be really pear-shaped and now woman's pants don't really fit me well anymore. I think it is ridiculous that I fit into a size 0, what kind of a size is that anyways?! I am not even that skinny. The sizes are getting bigger and the numbers smaller. When I first decided to try and lose the weight, I had realized that I had let myself get fat over the years, now I know why. It was when I saw a photo of myself 5 years ago and wondered: "wow, who is that fat girl? Oh it's me." It is hard to believe that I had 55lbs of stored fat on my body just a few years ago. That is 192,500 extra calories stored up for a rainy day. What exactly does a person need that much extra stored fuel for? It isn't like I am going to have a go through a 150day famine. Over-eating that much just doesn't make sense. But the one thing I have learned though the experience of trying to reverse the process of your body constantly being in storage mode, is that it isn't that easy to go in the opposite direction either. We just aren't used to the famine state, because we are always in the feast state. LC WOE is one tool that helps us get into the famine state, but you really do have to be patient.
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Old 04-28-2013, 05:55 PM   #20
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that is way too simplistic of a statement. The scale has plenty to do with fat loss because it actually shows it. Of course it's not perfect- it measures everything in your body, everyone knows that. But, tape measures and clothing sizes and clothing are far from perfect as well. Tape measures can be pulled tighter or looser, lower or higher, clothing sizes are a joke- clothes keep getting bigger while sizes get smaller, and clothing can be shrunk or gets big as the day goes on.

If you are losing weight (fat), it will show on the scale. And, if someone does tons of weight lifting and is gaining large amounts of muscle then they obviously know what their exercise regimen is like, but the majority of people are not working out at all or anywhere near as strenuously.

Weight was my goal, because clothing sizes can't be relied on and I knew that I wasn't going to work out hard enough to gain tons of muscle.
No, as I said, the scale measures total weight only. It IS simple. It does not distinguish what the weight is composed of.

No numbers should really be the goal when someone is wanting to lose fat & look better. No number - not fat % or inches lost or clothing size - can guarantee the achieving said number will make one happy & satisfied with their appearance.

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Old 04-29-2013, 02:00 AM   #21
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What difference does it make that the scale is weighing total body--bones, fecal matter--whatever?

It is still the best tool for weight management, IMO, as long as the individual understands its operation and limitations and uses that tool sensibly.

Computers are a useful tool, too, but as one of my former colleagues used to say, "The intelligence is in front of the computer, not in the machine."

All tools are only as helpful as the person using them.
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Old 04-29-2013, 03:32 AM   #22
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The problem with the scale is that it doesn't tell the whole picture. For example I wanted a break from dieting last fall, so I tried eating on a maintenance diet. For two months I did in fact maintain my weight, there were minor fluctuations but every morning it was roughly the same number. I had a DEXA scan done and found out that even though my weight on the scale hadn't changed my body composition did. I had lost lean mass and gained body fat! I figured because it was the fall that my body might have been just redistributing some of my mass to prepare for winter. But I was gaining fat without even realizing it. And I am sure the reverse is true. I have been at a stall for a couple months now, and this past week I am all of the sudden down 3lbs. What is going on? I am sure I didn't lose 3lbs of bodyfat this week after being stalled for two months on the scale.

On the other hand if I count this recent 3lb drop, the total weight I have lost over 5 years is now 58lbs. I guess that means something. I wish I had some pictures to track my progress.
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Old 04-29-2013, 03:44 AM   #23
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Maybe scale weight can be viewed as just one of several indicators of improved health (assuming that is the goal)
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Old 04-29-2013, 05:51 AM   #24
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Thank you Trillex for the post on adipose tissue. After reading the abstract I think I have answers to something that happened to me in Aug 2012. The abstract said "metabolic effects of fat mass loss will occur that may mimic lipodystrophic diseases." In August I had lost 30 lbs on Atkins...more like Paleo diet. The doctors diagnosed me with something called Panniculitis (inflammation of the subcutaneous fat). I see that Panniculitis is listed for Lipodystrophy or Lipoatrophy. The inflammation started out as 1-2 cm bumps at the ankles. The pain and swelling spread and I was put on a steroid. My blood levels had to be checked to see that my white blood cell count was back to normal. This was over 2 month period before everything returned to normal. I always thought it might have been related to my weight loss. I am fine now, lost 5 more pounds. I will always continue this type of diet since I feel wonderful. I don't expect anymore problems with the Panniculitis.
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Old 04-29-2013, 06:59 AM   #25
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As I mentioned in my previous post, tt's important to understand the scale--and its limitations. I regard it as my most valuable tool in maintaining my almost 200 lb weight loss for the past 2 years.

No, we don't lose 3 lbs 'suddenly' after a stall. What can happen--and often does--is that as we lose, our body fills the empty fat cells with water as a hedge against weight loss (which the body perceives as a negative). So although we are 'losing fat,' the number on the scale can remain the same or even go up. Eventually, the body dumps that water--and we see the actual fat loss.

For example, during my weight loss, I steadily lost a pound a week. Twice, I found that I'd lost nothing at all for 3 weeks--although I made no change to my eating or exercising. The final week of that month, I 'lost' 4 lbs. I didn't lose those 4 lbs in one week. My losses were just as consistent as previously, but they didn't 'show' until the 4th week. It happened that way only twice, and never again, reminding me that how our body processes our fat losses is beyond our control.

As to replacing lean body mass with fat, I doubt that can happen unless you were eating a caloric excess. Yes, as we age, we can lose muscle (which is why I do resistance exercise--to avoid muscle wasting at my age--71), but that's why some elderly people look so frail--they have lost muscle, but that doesn't turn to fat; their muscle cells collapse much as our fat cells do with weight loss. However, as we lose muscle, our percentage of body fat will be higher. Perhaps that's what you saw on the scan?

That should be a caveat about lean body mass. It doesn't remain stable, and the hormonal changes that women experience as they age affect both muscle and bone negatively. We need to be proactive to maintain both.
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Old 04-29-2013, 09:27 AM   #26
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Maybe scale weight can be viewed as just one of several indicators of improved health (assuming that is the goal)


Everything has limitations, but body weight as measured by a reliable scale is a great tool for most of us. Yes, advanced bodybuilders may be misled by the numbers but seriously, when I look around me I don't see many "large" people who are overweight because of too much muscle....no, FAT is the problem and after those first few pounds of water weight the bathroom scale is a pretty good measure of how much fat we are losing.
But we all are different so perhaps I should personalize it. I know, without a doubt that the weight I have lost since the initial 5 pounds or so of water has been fat. My wedding ring was resized then replaced, my pants went from 38 or 40 to 32, my muscls are bigger and stronger, and I feel and look great.
I go bo by how my clothes fit, and how I look in the mirror but I use no other "instrument" other than my reliable bathroom scale to routinely measure progress. Once in awhile I use the tape measure and every 3 months I get a blood test. but day in and day out the scale tells me a fact I can use every daY to stay on track.
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Old 04-30-2013, 03:43 AM   #27
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The advantage of a DEXA scan is that it tells you exactly how many lbs of fat you have on you and how many lbs of lean (fat free) mass you have. It also tells you how much bone mass you have. It is probably the best tool for measuring body composition. However if you have a lot of fat to lose, then the bathroom scale can be used being that it is much cheaper. I think my point about the scale, is that it seems to indicate that when you hit a stall you aren't losing body fat and that is what most people think. I haven't lost any pounds on the bathroom scale, I have stopped losing body fat.

Honestly, after using DEXA scans for a year and a half, I can say that losing muscle mass is difficult. You would probably have to be chronically eating under 1000cal a day and not doing any exercise to lose muscle mass. Muscles can shrink in size if you are doing a lot of cardio, but you don't actually lose the muscle fibers. Even if you are doing moderate weight lifting I don't think you would be in danger of losing muscle mass.

Last edited by Punkin; 04-30-2013 at 03:44 AM..
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Old 04-30-2013, 05:40 AM   #28
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Great thread, so much info!! This is why I always use my lowest weight as my "current" weigh in. Meaning, if I get on the scale one day and it says 204, and the next it says 209 - I have to assume as long as I'm faithful to my WOE my REAL weight is the lower one. May be bulloney, but I'm sticking to it!!
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Old 04-30-2013, 06:39 AM   #29
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Taubes talks about how muscle tissue is denser than fat, so if you exercise and build muscle you will lose inches while increasing weight. Then, there is that long pipe of a digestive systen that temporarily stores stuff, and the blood quantity that becimes thicker or thinner as we drink, sweat, and pee. Tain't all stored in the "fat cell bank". Them old scales don't know the difference between water, fat, muscle, or poo. Its just weight to them dumb old scales so it does the yoyo trick just to keep us off balance. Sometimes seems like a conspiracy designed just to irritate us poor dieters.
The bolded phrase is so true and thanks for the laugh this morning...I needed it.
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Old 04-30-2013, 06:44 AM   #30
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Honestly, after using DEXA scans for a year and a half, I can say that losing muscle mass is difficult. You would probably have to be chronically eating under 1000cal a day and not doing any exercise to lose muscle mass. Muscles can shrink in size if you are doing a lot of cardio, but you don't actually lose the muscle fibers. Even if you are doing moderate weight lifting I don't think you would be in danger of losing muscle mass.
I don't think it has as much to do with calories as with protein grams. You could be eating 2000 calories of candy or pure fat and lose muscle mass or 800 calories of protein rich foods and be fine. My doctor always tells me to make sure I am getting adequate protein and has no problems with my lower calories.

Last edited by nolcjunk; 04-30-2013 at 06:47 AM..
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