Last Updated on July 28, 2019
One day you step on the scale and it’s all good. The next day, you’re stepping on the scale, panicking because you’ve gained weight overnight. If you find yourself asking How the ^&#$ did I gain 5 Pounds Overnight?
Don’t panic! It’s absolutely possible to gain 3, 5 even 10 pounds overnight, but don’t worry! It’s not fat and it’s totally temporary. There are 7 possible reasons why you gained weight and I’ll break them down for you below.
Why Did I gain Weight Overnight?
7 Reasons Why You Gained Weight Overnight and How to Fix It
It kind of makes sense that the moon would affect our body’s since the moon controls water… and we’re 70% water. It has been known since roman times that the moon affects the water content in fruit. Pliny, the Elder, writing in AD 63 stated that it was best to pick fruits on specific days of the month if you wanted them to be plump and juicy.
Modern scientific studies on human urological issues have also backed up this idea showing that our bodies retain different levels of water in relation to the lunar cycle, making us plumper on different days of the month. (Don’t believe me? GOOGLE IT! ?)
On full moons, there are greater levels of water retention whereas on new moons it is at its least. Not only is this effect monthly but it is also seasonal, with water retention being greater around mid-summer and least around the New Year. It’s not uncommon for water signs, to feel extra puffy and bloated during a full moon or eclipse.
There’s no way to fight the force… andddd I wouldn’t worry too much about this effect on your weight. It’s only water, it’s temporary, and only accounts for a few ounces of gain. If you’re the type of person that freaks out over seeing an ounce or 2 increase on the scale, it’s best to avoid Sodium and Carbs the week the moon is full to prevent weigh-in freak outs. I only included this because I have dozens of clients who are extra hella sensitive about even the slightest fluctuations on the scale.
Salt does not cause your body to gain or lose fat. In fact, salt has no calories. High consumption of salt only results in temporary weight gain because it makes your body retain water. Want to drop a few pounds fast? Eating little to no salt can cause temporary weight loss because your body will pass that extra water weight.
Please note many popular diets promising quick weight loss rely on foods with little or no salt content. The weight loss is mostly water, and as soon as you eat foods containing salt again you regain the weight. A lot of figure and fitness models cut salt completely a week prior to a photoshoot or competition.
Low-carb diets help you shed pounds rapidly in the first few weeks, but you aren’t magically dropping fat. Reducing carbohydrates causes your body to lose excess water weight ‘naturally’ because carbohydrates actually encourage your body to hold on to water, so the more carbs you eat, the more water you retain. As a general rule, 1 gram of carb retains 3 grams of water.
Your Pipes are Clogged
When’s the last time you dropped a deuce? Preservatives and artificial ingredients in processed foods have a preservative affect on your body, causing you to gain weight. As they literally preserve waste (and fat) in your body. You should be going #2 at least 1 time a day and peeing at least once every hour and a half. If you’re not, purge your pipes by eating high fiber fruits, vegetables and nuts. Drink at least 1 glass of ice water every hour.
Sometimes inflammation is obvious – it causes redness, warmth, and/or pain and comes directly after experiencing an injury. However, chronic inflammation can be secretly affecting you without any injury. If you are eating foods high in acid, artificial ingredients, and/or things you’re intolerant or allergic to, you may be experiencing “secret” inflammation.
As we gain weight, our bodies do not add more fat cells. The fat cells we already have become larger and are filled with more fat instead. These cells may leak as they are aggravated and irritated. That’s when immune cells called macrophages come in to clean up the mess, releasing inflammatory chemicals as they do. Your body is trying to counteract the ‘secret’ inflammation by producing anti-inflammatory chemicals. These chemicals in turn interfere with the normal secretion of leptin.
Leptin is responsible for regulating your hunger habits, automatically maintaining you weight at the ‘right’ level. When leptin secretion is altered, cravings for food increases… and if you’re choosing foods that cause create more secret inflammation you’re going to be stuck in a cycle of eat – inflame – gain – repeat, that no amount of exercise can fix… plus most times, willpower isn’t enough to break the cycle.
Don’t freak out! It’s most likely your overnight weight gain came from sodium and carbs. However, if you’re sensitive, intolerant or allergic to inflammatory foods, eliminating them is the only way to stop the cycle. Corn, soy, dairy products, wheat, and gluten are the top foods affecting inflammation. Start by eliminating all of the before mentioned foods completely for 1 full week, then slowly reintroduce them into your diet – one at a time/one week at a time. That way you’ll be able to isolate your reaction(s) and pinpoint your secret inflamers.
Pre-period water weight can range from half of a pound to 10 pounds, usually averaging around five for most women. Why? The hormone progesterone—essential in the early stages of pregnancy—is to blame: when there’s no baby (aka when you get your period), these levels fall. As a side effect, each cell in your body retains an extra microscopic drop of water. Hormones are one of a few main causes of bloat and water retention. Bloating can easily make you feel a size (or two) bigger in a short period of time.
Also…. there’s leptin.
Leptin is a hormone that is secreted by the brain when your body is ‘full.’ Leptin’s main responsibility is to let you know hey I’m full – put the fork away. However a lot of people’s lifestyles and eating habits have made them leptin resistant, and they eat more because, they think they’re still hungry. It naturally takes your brain about 20 minutes to begin acknowledging you’re full. Hundreds – even thousands of calories can happen between feeling satisfied and feeling full – and gaining more waste and water weight. Trick your brain and body into feeling full by drinking two glasses of water before every meal. The water takes up space in your stomach, and will help you feel fuller faster. By the time your brain is naturally catching up and feeling full, you’ll be in the bathroom passing the water, helping you to feel skinny because your stomach is flatter because you just avoided eating extra food. Make sure you’re avoiding artificial, processed foods, get at least 7 solid hours of sleep a night and keep stress low to help get your hormone levels back to normal.
If all of the sudden you’re gaining weight or find you can’t lose weight your birth control or other medications may be to blame.
Birth control, steroids, nerve, depression and anti- anxiety medications have all been linked to rapid (and stubborn to lose) weight gain. Look up the side effects of any medications you’re on to see if any of the side effects match your symptoms, then talk to your doctor about alternate medications or natural treatments.
Tracking and Losing Temporary Weight
It’s really important that you weigh yourself accurately. You can see me explain how here. It’s best to use the *same* scale and weight yourself while avoiding any variables that can cause fluctuations on the scale. I recommend weighing yourself first thing in the morning, naked, before you eat/drink and after you use the bathroom. The scale measures total body weight (fat, muscle, waste, water) not changes in your body composition. Temporary water and waste weight and gains in lean muscle mass can make the number on the scale to go up, even though you’re really losing fat.
It’s good to add a body composition tracking method to make sure you’re making progress. Body composition tracking methods include, taking your measurements, progress pictures, body fat percentage, and/or tracker pants… i.e. how are your clothes fitting? That way you’ll know if you’re losing fat, even though the scale is saying otherwise.
Whatever you do, don’t let this temporary gain, take you out of your game. Stay focused and positive. Go to the gym to sweat off the extra pounds and drink lots of water to flush out your body.
You can do this! It works if you work it.
Heads up! It is A LOT HARDER to lose fat if you have toxic build-up, metabolic damage, or a hormone imbalance working against you. That’s why I created this Free Metabolic Profile to teach you, your unique metabolic type and to let you know if you have anything working against you.
If you feel like you’re constantly feeling ‘puffy’, carrying extra weight in your abdomen, and constantly battling cravings, I’d recommend I really suggest taking the free profile to learn what factors you may have working against you, then I’ll recommend a program that will get you the results you want FAST. I can get you noticeable results in DAYS, not weeks. Guaranteed.
Your Biggest Cheerleader : )
Christina is a certified Holistic Nutritionist, Personal Trainer, and Fitness & Health Coach. After healing multiple health issues, getting off 7 meds, & losing 40 pounds – and keeping it off for 10+ years, Christina teaches others how to get Happy, Healthy, & Fit quickly without any bullshit. She’ll show you how to slim down, tone up, and feel fantastic naturally with the most delicious food and least intense workouts possible.