I would like to applaud Carol Krucoff's article ''Scrap the Scale'' {Health, July 10} for drawing a distinction between weight deriving from muscle versus fat. As a mental health counselor in the field of eating disorders, I am constantly faced with clients' misunderstandings regarding healthy body weight.

People who struggle with body image and weight attribute far too much to the scale. They allow themselves to ''feel good'' if they have lost weight and to feel ''depressed'' if they have gained. They misuse the scale to determine moral character, such as ''I've been good/bad.'' The entire tone of the day may be set according to the instrument's feedback. For those people, scrapping the scale may indeed be a worthwhile solution.

For many struggling the daily Battle of the Bulge, weighing regularly is a useful discipline. It represents a reminder that weight maintenance, healthful eating and exercise require constant attention. The scale can reinforce the repetitious need for mindfulness. It is a daily reminder of success for the formerly obese and the first warning signal of relapse.

As with most things, moderation is the key. Scrapping the scale is a bit too extreme. My recommendation: Use the scale, and do not read into its numbers more than is there. The scale is an instrument with limited capacity. Use it with that purpose in mind.

MONICA BARUCH Silver Spring