Excessive weight loss comes with serious risks

Lana Bandoim's picture

Although some continue to search for magic pills or potions that keep them from gaining weight or help them lose it instantly, excessive weight loss is a serious issue. Many people over the age of 25 are concerned about their figures and worry about the number of pounds they have to shed to regain them. Unfortunately, some reach a point when dedication to a healthier lifestyle can turn into an obsession. If this happens, your health is at risk, and it may be time for an intervention.

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Weight loss disorders that plague the world

It is estimated that 30 percent of the world’s population is overweight or obese, and this issue has become the specter that haunts healthy weight conversations. However, there is another segment of the population that is rarely discussed. It is the 10 percent of the population that is underweight, or the 1 in 200 women who suffers from a serious eating disorder that leaves her under the healthy weight range for her body type. There are many disorders, conditions and habits that can lead to an unhealthy low weight, but the following are some of the most common.

Eating disorders: One of the most common causes of excessive weight loss is eating disorders. This includes anorexia, which is when people starve themselves to lose weight, and bulimia, which is when individuals go through cycles of binging on food and vomiting before the calories are absorbed. Both of these conditions can result in severe weight loss, malnutrition and psychological issues.

Drug addiction: A common sign of drug addiction is severe weight loss. For example, heroin is an extremely addictive drug that can affect the brain to the point that you want drugs more than food. The longer heroin or another drug remains in your system, the greater the impact it can have on your weight and health.

Serious health conditions: Cancer patients are known for losing weight rapidly and being unable to gain it back. Hyperthyroidism, celiac disease, stomach ulcers and many other serious health conditions can also cause you to lose weight quickly.

Fad weight loss diets: Diets that promise rapid weight loss in a short amount of time can be dangerous. You can lose too much weight and fluids, and this can create serious issues such as malnutrition and dehydration.

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When are you underweight?

Losing weight can be important, but it is crucial to recognize when your weight loss goals may be unrealistic, or you need to focus on maintaining your weight. The best way to determine this is to consult a doctor because he or she can give you the most accurate weight target for your height and build.

You can also use an online body mass index (BMI) calculator, which shows you the relationship between your weight and your height. This calculation is not considered entirely accurate by all health authorities because other factors can often play a significant role in determining a healthy weight. However, it is generally considered a good starting point. If your BMI is below 18.5, you are considered underweight.

Losing weight too quickly

It is important to consider the impact of losing weight quickly on your overall health. Most physicians recommend that you aim for a goal of shedding one pound per week. This is considered the optimum weight loss goal that does not sacrifice essential nutrition. Some believe you can safely lose up to two pounds per week, but more than this amount may be unsafe and unhealthy. If you find a diet that promises you will lose 10 pounds in the first two weeks, you should probably avoid it. This kind of weight loss is not sustainable or safe.

Negative effects of excessive weight loss

The effects of being underweight can be just as dangerous as being obese. Being underweight increases your risk of multiple health problems such as weak bones, malnutrition, weak immune system, anemia, fertility issues, hair loss, growth problems and fatigue. It also raises your risk of cancer and early death.

The effects of low weight can be devastating and affect your entire future. It is important to speak with your doctor or another trusted medical professional about your weight loss strategy. This will help you set a realistic goal, so you can reach it in a healthy way.

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