The Tale of the Dripping Tap and the See-saw.

June 23, 2013 BY: LISA

It sounds like the start of a Chinese proverb but in actual fact it’s about our food and weight loss. Often times when people are trying to lose weight they overlook the little things.

I was having a conversation with a client the other day and he put together this really nice analogy of how all the little things can add up to prevent him losing weight.

As a dietitian, I often hear things like,” I don’t do that often”, “that really only happens occasionally”, “I never have more than one”, “I only eat after dinner sometimes.” People find it difficult to imagine that these little things can be the reason they are having trouble losing weight or that their weight is increasing when they really haven’t changed much about their food intake. It’s easy to understand when you recall overeating- such as a holiday- but when you are just getting on with life sometimes you have to pay attention to the little things. I hope this explanation will shed some light for you.

The See-Saw:
Energy In         ___________________I_________________   Energy Out

The see-saw is the perfect thing to picture to help you understand the theory of weight loss and weight gain:

When these two things are in balance we have weight maintenance. This is why when you suddenly stop being able to exercise your weight starts to increase. It’s like someone jumping off the other end of the see-saw! That is one of the fabulous benefits of exercise is that it really keep a lid on your weight.

Alternatively when you eat more than you need the ‘energy in’ side starts to get heavier than the ‘energy out’ side and you slowly or quickly start to put on weight- depending on how much you are over eating.

And here comes the dripping tap part:

Let’s say that you are exercising at a constant level and you are also saying some of the things above, like,”I don’t do that often” etc. Imagine that each time you say something like this it’s like a drop of water falling into a cup. After a time each drop contributes to filling the cup and adds up to a heavier amount on the ‘energy in’ side of the see-saw.

Remember we really only need to eat the calorie equivalent of a 40gram piece of cheese or one slice of bread or 2 plain sweet biscuits a day more that we need to start that cup filling and tipping the see-saw in the favour of weight gain.

So if you are feeling like you are eating really well and are still not losing weight or if you are confused about why you are gaining weight then I urge to consider the little things and remember the proverb of the dripping tap and the see-saw!


Lisa (Confucius) Renn APD



  1. I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you design
    this website yourself or did you hire someone
    to do it for you? Plz respond as I’m looking to create my own blog and would like to know where u got this from. thanks a lot

    Premium Green Coffee
    July 21st, 2013
  2. Hi there, sorry I’m just replying. Don’t get to the comments much obviously! My website was created by someone Brand Create – John Naismith I have a new one now and would like to know what you think. Cheers

    Lisa Renn
    March 25th, 2014
  3. I really like this one confucious!!

    Easy to visualise….

    July 30th, 2013

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