How Do You Calculate Percentage Of Weight Loss?

No matter what your reasons for losing weight are, whether it is to avoid weight-related health issues, to improve your body image, or simply to feel healthier overall, it is important that you do so in a controlled manner. 

How Do You Calculate Percentage Of Weight Loss?

While it can be easy to lose weight without tracking it properly, this can lead to rapid and unsustainable weight loss that is only temporary. 

When you bring tracking methods to your weight loss plan, you are much more likely to lose weight in a healthy and stable manner. 

In this article, we will look at the different ways you can calculate percentage of weight loss, whether that is a good way to track your weight loss, and why it is important. 

Why Calculating Weight Loss Is Important

Calculating the weight that you are losing plays an important role in helping to ensure you are losing weight in a healthy and sustainable way. 

Calculating the percentage of weight loss is one of the best ways to do this too. 

Calculating whether you are losing weight quickly or steadily is one of the best ways to ensure that you are in control of your weight loss and are doing so sustainably. 

Although it may be tempting to lose as much weight as possible in a short period of time, especially if you struggle with your body image, this is likely to lead to the regaining of the weight you lost when you stop.  

What Is A Healthy Weight Loss Percentage?

Now that we know why calculating the rate at which you are losing weight is important, it is necessary to understand what a healthy weight loss percentage looks like. 

It can be difficult to dictate what a healthy weight loss percentage is because it all depends on your starting weight. 

The higher your starting weight is, the higher the percentage of weight that you lose will likely be. 

However, the recommended, sustainable weight loss per week is around 2lbs each week. 

This is the most attainable and steady weight loss goal to meet.  If your starting weight is 210lbs for example and you lose around 2lbs in your first week, you will have lost almost 1% of your weight. 

Keep that rate of weight loss up and you could lose almost 4% of your weight in a month which is perfectly sustainable and will help keep you motivated.

Is Percentage The Best Way To Track Weight Loss?

Is Percentage The Best Way To Track Weight Loss?

As with any method of tracking weight loss, percentage of weight loss may not work as a good metric for everyone. 

Although, once you have perfected the formula or have found an online calculator, it can be one of the easiest ways to visually see the amount of weight you have lost in more than simply numbers on a scale. 

However, because when you are losing weight you are often putting on muscle mass at the same time, numbers can be deceptive when measuring weight loss. 

The best way to accurately keep track of your progress is to combine numerical measurements such as scales and percentages with physical measurements. 

Some of the best ways to measure the physical changes in your body are extremely simple. 

Things such as noticing how your clothes fit and whether they are becoming looser or fitting your body better, or taking a tape measure and measuring parts of your body such as your arms, legs, and waist can help to track progress. 

These things are often referred to as non-scale victories and can be extremely useful in helping you to remain motivated during weeks where the scale doesn’t seem to move much.  

Methods Of Calculating Weight Loss Percentage

There are three main ways that you can calculate the percentage of weight that you have lost depending on your confidence in your math skills. 

You can learn the formula used by online calculators, or you can just use the online calculators that take the work out of it for you. 

If you prefer to see your progress in a more tangible way, a spreadsheet may be the way forward.  Below we have outlined the three most common ways to calculate weight loss percentage. 

Online Calculators

Most weight loss sites contain their own version of weight loss calculators. 

This is perhaps the easiest way to calculate the weight that you have lost so far or that you are planning to lose. 

All online calculators will follow the same formula for calculating the percentage of weight loss, therefore it doesn’t matter which calculator you use. 

Simply put your start weight in the first box and your current or goal weight in the second box and the calculator will work out the percentage of weight that you have or will lose.  Most calculators also offer metric and imperial measures.

Weight Loss Percentage Equation

If you don’t want to use an online calculator for any reason, the equation that they use is simple enough to do yourself either in your head or on a regular calculator. 

To work out your weight loss percentage with the formula simply divide the amount of weight you have lost by your starting weight then multiply the result by 100. 

Make sure that you have both weights in the same units otherwise the equation won’t work.  

For example, the equation could be 10 / 210 x 100 = 4.8% of starting weight lost. 

In this example, someone who weighed 210lbs has lost 10lbs which means that they have lost 4.8% of their overall starting weight.  

Calculating Weight Loss Percentage Through Spreadsheets

If you are someone who prefers to be able to see all the stages of your progress in front of you, a spreadsheet may be the best option for you. 

Simply recording your weekly weights in software such as Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets can help visually represent your weight loss week by week. 

You can then enter the same formula as outlined above to work out your percentages. 

Final Thoughts

Calculating percentage of weight loss is a lot easier than it sounds, especially with all of the tools that are available for free online.

There are other ways that you can monitor your weight loss alongside percentages and numbers that can help keep you motivated and on track. 

However, tracking percentages on a weekly basis can help ensure that you are losing weight in a sustainable manner.

Jenna Priestly
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