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Effect of clothing weight on body weight



In clinical settings, it is common to measure weight of clothed patients and estimate a correction for the weight of clothing, but we can find no papers in the medical literature regarding the variability in clothing weight of adults with weather, season and gender.


Fifty adults (35 women) were weighed four times during a 12-month period with and without clothing. Clothing weights were determined and regressed against minimum, maximum and average daily outdoor temperature.


The average clothing weight (±s.d.) throughout the year was significantly greater in men than in women (1.2±0.3 vs 0.8±0.3 kg, P<0.0001). The average within-person minimum and the average within-person maximum clothing weights across the year were 0.9±0.2 and 1.5±0.4 kg for men, and 0.5±0.2 and 1.1±0.4 kg for women, respectively. The within-person s.d. in clothing weight was 0.3 kg for both men and women. Over the 55 °C range in the lowest to the highest outdoor temperatures, the regressions predicted a maximal change in clothing weight of only 0.4 kg in women and 0.6 kg in men.


The clothing weight of men is significantly greater than that of women, but there is little variability throughout the year. Therefore, a clothing adjustment of approximately 0.8 kg for women and 1.2 kg for men is appropriate regardless of outdoor temperature.

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  1. Tuan T, Marsh DR, Ha TT, Schroeder DG, Thach TD, Dung VM et al. Weighing vietnamese children: how accurate are child weights adjusted for estimates of clothing weight? Food Nutr Bull 2002; 23: 48–52.

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Funding for this study was provided by the Beers-Murphy Clinical Nutrition Clinic.

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Correspondence to L D Whigham.

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Whigham, L., Schoeller, D., Johnson, L. et al. Effect of clothing weight on body weight. Int J Obes 37, 160–161 (2013).

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