Dangers of Chronic Dieting

ScaleWhile many people can admit to dieting at some point in their lives, there is a difference between wanting to lose weight the healthy way (slow and steady) or relying on fad diets that promise quick fixes.

The problem with fad diets is that they will most likely last just as long as it took you to lose the weight.  Instead of losing weight gradually over time and being able to maintain the weight loss, these short-lived diets will actually end up costing you more than you bargained for.

Because of their quick-fix results, many people unfortunately get caught up in the cycle of dieting for a specific event, gaining the weight back, and then trying a new fad the next time.  This is known as chronic dieting.

While these may work in the short-term, there can be negative long-term effects such as:

Slowed Metabolism– When dieting consists of a drastic decrease in caloric intake, your body will compensate for this “starvation mode”, which will slow the rate of your metabolism.  While many diets claim to speed up metabolism, they are actually doing the opposite.

More Challenging to Lose Weight– Over time, after numerous fad diet episodes, it will be harder for your body to lose excess weight, and even harder to gain back the lean muscle mass that you have lost.  After a quick-fix diet, youhave lost mostly water weight and muscle, so when you do gain weight back, it is not muscle, it is fat.  Therefore, although you may lose initial weight, the chances of you gaining even more fat back after your success is extremely high.

Altered Mood– What happens when you get hungry?  You get angry!  Not having the appropriate amount of food in your system can affect your mood because of hormonal changes and a lower level of blood sugar.  With less energy being consumed, the more tired you become as well. Is losing weight in an unhealthy fashion worth being tired and in a bad mood for?

Nutrient Deficiencies– Some diets restrict certain nutrients such as carbohydrates or complete food groups, such as dairy.  When you aren’t eating well-balanced meals, you are likely missing some essential nutrients that can lead to deficiencies and disease.

The next time you hear of a fad diet that is too good to be true, it probably is! There are many ways to lose weight fast, but they certainly are not healthy and over time can lead to further health complications. Eating well-balanced meals and letting your body guide you while incorporating consistent exercise is the true way to long-term weight loss and a happier and healthier lifestyle.

Your turn to take action:  What will you do to finally step off the diet roller coaster?

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7 replies
    • Bonnie R. Giller
      Bonnie R. Giller says:

      You are correct; it is so important especially as we get older to be sure we are eating well balanced meals and snacks throughout the day. Please feel free to forward this and any other blog posts that might help your family and friends. Thanks for commenting.

      Reply
  1. Stephanie M. Raines
    Stephanie M. Raines says:

    Great post Bonnie-lots of wisdom!

    I think people can’t conceive of what maintaining really is or moderation; our society has damaged our understanding of these factors.

    It’s whatever you can live with day in and day out, while learning new ways of cooking, trying new foods, and changing your perspective.

    I applaud your focus on maintaining a healthy lifestyle. Bookmarking your website!

    Reply
    • Bonnie R. Giller
      Bonnie R. Giller says:

      Thank you Stephanie. You are so right. Society really has damaged people’s perspective about eating and body image. I am trying hard to help people get off the diet roller and to be accepting of their body. Thanks for bookmarking my website. I have looked at yours as well, and will visit it often as I can benefit from some of what you offer. Will be in touch.

      Reply
  2. Chivon
    Chivon says:

    Great post Bonnie! It’s unfortunate that many folks are on a quest for a quick fix and fail to recognize the long term effects of neglecting their health. I’ve been there and realize that your mindset and tuning into what your body needs is very important

    Reply
    • Bonnie R. Giller
      Bonnie R. Giller says:

      Chivon, it is the mindset that is key, you are correct. Creating a healthy non-diet mindset and learning what your body needs and respecting it are key. Along with nutrition education and caring support, one will find they will never diet again.

      Reply

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