Weight loss from showering?

Dear Cecil:

I have a digital scale in my bathroom, and it rounds weight to the nearest half pound. I’ve gotten in the habit of weighing myself before and after I take a shower (true, I should have better things to do, but – face it – if it weren’t for people like me, there wouldn’t be people like you).

My original expectation was that I’d weigh the same after showering, or maybe a rounded-up half pound more (since I’m towel-dried but still wet). But, more often than not – maybe 70% of the time – I actually weigh a half pound, or even a full pound, less. To round out the stats: I weigh the same about 20% of the time, and more only about 10% of the time.

For the sake of science, I’ve also tried weighing myself twice, at intervals matching my shower time, without showering. On those dry runs I always weigh the same amount, which would seem to answer any questions about the scale itself.

I lead a sheltered indoor life, so I don’t accumulate much dirt between my daily showers. I can’t imagine there’s enough crud washing off me to tilt the balance. And if it has nothing to do with external crud, could I patent this showering/self-weighing regimen as a weight-loss program?

Your wisdom would be much appreciated.

You must be new here lol

Stop peeing in the shower.

or other “things”

Don’t you sweat a lot in a hot shower?

If your scale is in the bathroom, I would guess that the increased humidity is affecting the scales.

This is quite common. The weight sensor gauge in the scale is not immune to temperature & humidity fluctuations and will register differently in the very humid and warm post shower environment.

It’s common to assume a digital scale is fairly accurate. Despite the digital readout many digital home scales are not very accurate.

Yes, because a digital readout has a relatively high degree of mathematical precision compared to an analogue readout people tend to assume it is also more accurate. But all the significant figures in the world won’t help you if the measurement system itself is not accurate.

Try weighing yourself in the morning, then just run the shower for the same interval as normal, without getting in, then weigh yourself again.

Without a doubt, there must be some activity you are performing in the shower that burns 1500 calories and causes the scale weight to round down. I leave it up to you to contemplate how vigorous and complete those showers are.

Yes, couldn’t this account for it? I remember the old cartoons where characters would spend too long in a steam room and come out tiny, from having sweated away so much weight.

A pint of water weighs just over a pound. The human bladder has a capacity of about a pint, but usually demands emptying well before that.

The calculations are left as an exercise for the reader.

You don’t need to lose a half pound to have a scale register a half-pound of lost weight.

If you are 175.5 and the scale rounded up from 175.25 you just need to get down to 175.11 for it to read 175.

I think that’s a great theory. All the comments make sense, but I’ll bet this is the main explanation.


Just weighing in to note that I have seen the same phenomenon with myself. I can’t explain why, but can verify that it occurs without…um…the loss of any fluid from the body, except perhaps from sweat, which is undetectable.

And in a related idea, many people assert that you sweat while swimming. How would you know? I have always thought that perhaps the body is intelligent enough not to sweat when immersed, as the immersion liquid is performing the same task anyway. But I don’t know. Does anyone?

I often lose weight inexplicably. The only reasonable answer I could think of (probably not relevant here) is respiration causing a loss of water.

I would agree in this case that humidity/temperature is affecting the result.

Or just move the scale to a different room.

I’d like to point out that digital scales are not actually as precise as you’d think. I always get slightly different readings, even if I weight one time right after another.

Heck, even differences in position can give wildly different results. I “lost” 30 pounds once by shifting my weight around. (It was at school, people were looking, and I didn’t want to be embarrassed.)

I watched, “Twisted Sisters” last night. It was about female body builders. Trying to lose some final pounds, they would stop showering the week before, to avoid absorption of water into the skin, adding extra weight.

:smack: Yeah, that’d be easier.