Water weight won't come off.


Q: Okay, over the past few months I have been eating healthy/working out and losing a bit of weight. This past weekend, however, I visited my sister in college and lost track a little (i.e went to parties/drank a little bit/ate greasy food). On Monday, I went back to eating clean and doing my daily workouts. I weight myself on Monday, and the scale went up about 4 pounds from before the weekend. Now I didn't see this in itself as a huge deal in that I knew it was probably just water weight and in addition I had a great weekend, so no regrets. What is worrying me is that now it's Wednesday night, and my weight is exactly the same as it was Monday! still 3/4 pounds up! I even just weighed myself after an intense workout and still no change! (usually right after working out you would see a change in water weight because of the sweating!) I've been weighing myself multiple times a day (the same times everyday) and it's been full three days and literally not even a pound of this "Water weight" dropped. I know I did not eat nearly enough this weekend to actually gain maybe more than half a pound so I'm very confused. Can it take more than 3 days to even see a pound drop of water weight? Also, in the past, whenever I have cheat days similar to this at least some/if not most of the weight would be off after 3 days!! Thanks!!!

Symptoms:  Weight loss.

A:   Hello,
Thank you for your medical query at AskTheDoctor.com
I understand your concern.
It is difficult to call it " water weight ". Some people have very bad metabolism, rather slow metabolism, and a slight variation from the normal diet, lets them put on weight rapidly. Since you have a very active lifestyle and follow a very healthy diet, any minor deviations, especially when alcohol comes into the picture, it will lead to some weight gain. I am not saying it is not water weight, but there are chances that you gained this weight from the couple of days when you could not follow your schedule.

Please do not worry. It's been only 3 days. You will lose it over a period of 1 week, provided you keep up your active lifestyle and healthy diet. I will also advise you not to check your weight for the next 3 days, and check it at the end of the 7th day. By then you definitely would have lost at least 1-2 pounds.

Hope this was helpful,
Feel free to discuss further,

Comments / Follow Ups

Patient: Thank you very much for your response! The only thing that is keeping me flustered inevitably there are days (maybe once every other week/sometimes once a week) where I'll eat more than I usually do/ cheat a little bit. And when that happens my body usually does go up about 3 pounds but it would have been off by now. So it's not like this cheat day was really new for my body that's why I don't get what the difference is between this time and times past? Also, lets say it is water weight, is it possible to take more than three days to even see a pound drop? Or should i assume it's permanent weight gain because of that?
Doctor: Hello,
I totally understand your concern.
Unfortunately, those with slow metabolism have this issues of intermittent weight gain which can be totally unexplained.

Normally since you still did not lose it, it could be a permanent weight gain, but the good thing is if you keep continuing your diet, it is imperative that the weight you gained will come down gradually.

We all have such " cheat days ". So please do not worry. As long as you maintain your lifestyle, this additions will be nullified on the longer run.


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