7 Numbers to Measure Health (No, not your Weight)

How many times do you step on the scale each week? Once? Every day? Twice a day?

What if I told you there's a much better way to track your health?

Your weight is not the most important health-related number, but it is the one you probably think of first. It’s easy to track – after all, you only need a bathroom scale. But there are other numbers that are just as easy to track which are way more important.

To be health smart, learn what these numbers are, then monitor them instead of checking your weight.

7 Health Numbers You Should Track (instead of weight)

1. How many hours do you sleep each night?

If you're getting less than 7 hours of sleep at night, or more than 9, you may be hurting your health.

The National Sleep Foundation says that adults over 18 who sleep less than 7 hours risk depression, obesity, and other serious health conditions. And if you’re sleeping more than 9 hours on a regular basis you’re also at risk.

2. How many glasses of water do you drink each day?

middle-aged woman pouring water to glass numbers track healthYou’ve been told to drink a minimum of 8 glasses of water a day for as long as you can remember. But do you?

Most people still ignore this advice, even though it is an important part of giving your body what it needs.

If you’re not sure whether you’re getting enough fluid each day, there’s a good way to check: take a look at your urine. If it is pale, it’s a good sign that you’re drinking enough. If it's yellow or darker, you need to drink a lot more.

There are even ways that make getting your daily water intake more fun!

3. What’s your waist measurement?

You don’t need a 26” waist to be healthy, but you do need to know if you’re storing belly fat.

Also known as visceral fat, belly fat is a risk factor for stroke, heart disease and other illnesses.

4. How much produce are you eating?

african american family eat fruits vegetables numbers track healthAn apple a day is a good start, but it’s not enough.

The number of servings of fruits and vegetables you eat each day is a very good indication of your overall health.

Try to have at least four or 5 servings a day. Mix it up by paying attention to how many colors you’re eating each day. The more deeply colored a fruit or vegetable it is, the more nutrients it contains.

5. How many minutes are you working out?

Physical activity is a pillar of good health.

Whether you’re tracking steps or the amount of time that you exercise each day, you need to be mindful of moving. Make 30 minutes a day your goal.

6. What's your blood pressure?

doctor measuring blood pressure numbers track healthYour blood pressure is something you can check at most pharmacies, though you may not need to. Your doctor will let you know if you are at risk, and if so you need to start paying more attention.

7. How's your cholesterol?

Your cholesterol levels are a good indication of your risk of heart disease. Make sure your doctor is checking it regularly, and if you're at risk take the proper steps (including eating this soup) to keep it at a healthy level.

Speaking of numbers, you can forget about counting calories too! Here's what to count instead.

Yours in health and happiness,


P.S. Please pass this article on to anyone you know who is fixated on tracking their weight and I welcome your comments below. Have you thrown out your scale yet?