Digital Scale Vs Doctors Scale: Which One Wins?

Which is More Accurate: Digital Scale or Doctor's Scale

Weighing scales are quite common in present time. While their main purpose is to allow people to weigh in at any time of day, they are quite versatile. You'll find these scales in most doctor's offices and homes. That said a doctor's scale is not the same as their digital variants. 

fittrack scale in gym with weights

If you are planning to get a scale to track your weight loss progress, you may be wondering which one to choose. Some people prefer digital while others prefer analog. But which one is better? Let us find out by addressing common questions asked about both. 

Do Doctors Scales Make you Weigh More?

Many people notice that their weight is a bit high whenever they weigh in on an analog doctor's scale. Compared to a digital scale, an analog scale shows them 3 to 4 pounds heavier.

However, if you check your weight on a digital scale, you will notice a lower body weight by 3 to 4 pounds. 

This can be very confusing for people as they wonder which variant is offering the accurate reading. Well, in most cases, the electronic scales tend to be more accurate.

This is especially true for modern ones as manufacturers are now addressing the common problems people noticed in analog scales and previous versions of digital scales.

These advances in technology make it easier for homeowners to highly-accurate scale like the FitTrack Dara. The Dara is accurate to with .5-.8% of BOD POD

Can Digital Scales be Wrong

Most of us have stepped on doctor's scale and noticed some weight gain. This is because a lot of analog medical scales show weight fluctuations no matter how often you check your weight. However, if you check your weight on a digital scale, you will notice that your weight is closer to what you expected. 

It is a major reason why more and more people are choosing digital scales, as they believe they are more accurate.

This does beg the question " can digital scales be wrong?" Well, for the most part, they are a significantly better option than your average doctor's scale. 

Sure, there might be some cases where you come across faulty digital bathroom scales, but it does not happen very often.

The reason behind that is that they do not require too much calibration and their precision is significantly higher compared to beam scales. However, you should still consider a few things before getting a smart scale to get an accurate reading. 

First off, you must prioritize consistency over additional features. Sure, having Bluetooth is great, but its better to have an accurate scale instead of one that has unimportant features. 

Why Don't Doctors use Digital Scales

Contrary to popular belief beam scales don't measure your weight. Instead, they help measure mass. So, as long as they are in decent condition and their materials didn't go through too much wear and tear, their results will remain accurate.

For instance, if you did a weigh on a doctor's scale and took it to a location with 1 by 3 gravity, the readings in both locations will remain unchanged. 

In the case of digital scales, they only measure the hard surface being pushed. In addition, there are several other factors that influence the accuracy of a smart scale.

Factors like humidity, temperature, altitude, calibration, and even location can show you inaccurate metrics.

In addition, a digital scale's calibration method can sometimes be opaque and error-ridden, which is another reason why most doctors use analog scales.

What's more, people sometimes even use calibration scales along with their digital scales, which is a clear indicated that their calibration might not be the best. Meanwhile, doctors can always zero out their beam scale without requiring any equipment. 

Additionally, most doctors in the United States use mechanical scales during training, and they continue to use it in their practice.

However, as time passes, some doctors are doing away with their analog scales, replacing them with accurate, improved digital alternatives. 

Why Does my Digital Scale give Different Weights?

While modern digital scales are significantly more accurate than older ones, people still notice fluctuations. As mentioned before, a home scale should be able to provide you with the right measurements, helping you improve your physical wellness and if your scale's measurements are inaccurate, maybe its time you gave another product a try. 

But you still may be wondering why are some digital scales inaccurate despite the various technological advancements.

Well, there are plenty of reasons - it's not that these scales are inherently bad to begin with but some of them require maintenance on a regular basis to provide the best results. 

Let us discuss some factors that impact your digital scale's performance:

Careless Use

Modern home scales contain sensitive items, and any damage to its surface could result in malfunction. Rough use is one of the biggest reason that makes your scale's readings inaccurate.

It is best to store the scale at a safe place, ensuring it is away from kids and other elements that could damage it.

Moisture and Water

Like most electronic devices, too much exposure to water and moisture can damage your digital scale's interior components.

If you store your scale inside the bathroom, ensure that it is not exposed to a lot of moisture. Also, remember to dry your feet before weighing in, as that too could cause your scale to give incorrect readings. 

Loading Unevenly

An easy, unthinking mistake that most people make when stepping on a bathroom scale is that they often distribute their weight unevenly. Instead of standing straight, they tend to put most of their weight on one leg.

Believe it or not, wrong postures and uneven weight distribution is a major cause behind inaccurate readings, and merely adjusting your position can give you the correct results. 

Low Battery or Unstable Power

Low battery or unstable power are common reasons behind imprecise readings. If you notice fluctuations in your weighing scale, consider checking whether its has enough battery.

It would also help if you checked the device's power adapters. Defective power adapters also impact the scale's reading, and troubleshooting them could make the problem go away. 

How Did I Gain 2 Pounds Overnight?

Does your bathroom scale show that you are two pounds overweight. If yes, there is no need to worry, as it happens to most people. There could be several reasons why the scale is showing you two pounds heavy. Let us look at some common ones:

  • Your last meal had too much salt
  • You ate an excessive amount of sugar. Getting rid of the weight gained by sugar could take a day or two
  • Dehydration can also cause you to gain a couple of pounds. Consider drinking 90 to 130 ounces of water every day
  • Your bowel movement is poor. Merely going for a "number two" can help you lose up to 2 pounds

How Much Does Your Weight Fluctuate Throughout The Week?

Weight fluctuation is very normal. People who weight themselves every week or even every day notice that the scale shows a very different reading from last time.

The reasons behind weight fluctuation on a regular basis are sometimes very obvious. The amount of calories you consume and barn are massive determinants of how much you will weigh on a week to week or daily basis. 

You may even notice weight gain even if your are on a steady, healthy diet. Lack of bowel movement, water consumption and exercise could lead to rapid weight gain, especially in adults. 

Other Ways to Measure Body Fat

You can measure body fat through several tried and tested techniques. Let us discuss the best ones:

Check Your Weight 

Checking your weight on a reliable scale will give you a measure of your entire body mass, which includes fat, organs, blood, and bones. However, you will need to weigh in on a regular basis to obtain accurate readings. 

Body Mass Index

BMI is ideal for people with a healthy weight. Body mass index tax an individual's weight in kilograms and divides it by height squared. Many people rely on BMI because of its excellent accuracy.

Skin fold Calipers

Calipers can help you measure your subcutaneous fat's thickness, which is the fat beneath the skin at particular areas of your body. Calipers are quite popular because of how cost effective and portable they are. In most cases, people pinch their skin at the thigh, abs, and chest area, to determine how much body fat they have. 


All you need to know about exercise & depression