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Under 1200 for weight-loss

Emmapatterson1729Emmapatterson1729 Member Posts: 1,307 Member Member Posts: 1,307 Member
I see new faces here daily, see new posts about eating low calories daily. If you've read my story, just ignore post. If very short and sedentary ignore my post.

I had congestive heart failure at 25 years old.

I was 5'8" around 135 lbs,
US size 9.

Ate around the 1000 calorie mark (usually coming in around 1100). Some days as low as 800 (just wasn't hungry), once every couple of weeks would binge a little and hit around 1200 calories.

I walked 3-9 miles and did an ab workout daily. After a binge, I would feel guilty and do aerobics. I also played tennis.

I wasn't Karen Carpenter thin.

I gained just over 100 lbs of water weight when my heart failed. Eating too low of calories to replenish the energy spent, caused an unbalance in electrolytes, one chamber of heart swelled, slowed, and I retained 100 lbs of water in a two months time.

Because gain was so fast, I ended up with deformities for life. I had a breast reduction, because they swelled from a perky D cup, to hanging in my lap H cup. Insurance wouldn't cover a tummy tuck or thigh lift, so stuck for life with deformed stomach and thighs (originally stomach hung so low, it would get calloused from hitting the ground when I sat).

It caused other problems as well, had to have gallbladder removed immediately, hormones went crazy, and ended up mal-absorbent.

Just before my heart failed, I felt healthy and strong. I was just trying to lose weight I had gained from a pregnancy that ended in a miscarriage. Almost at goal weight and size when heart failed.

Shocked when I was diagnosed as eating anorexic calorie levels. I couldn't believe I was obese from eating what I thought was healthy eating.

I struggled with depression going from thin and fit to obese, going from active and athletic to immobile, couldn't breathe just walking from bed to toilet. I had never considered myself anorexic, because I was curvy and not rail thin.

Eating too low of calories isn't worth the risks of these consequences. Eating too low of calories, literally destroyed my health and severely worsened my quality of life!
edited August 2019
«134

Replies

  • try2againtry2again Member Posts: 3,560 Member Member Posts: 3,560 Member
    Goodness, I’m very sorry you had to go through that and are still living with the consequences. May I ask a question? Like you, I’m 5’8” and 135 is very near ideal healthy weight for me (actually most calculators say 137). How were you maintaining at that weight while eating 1000 calories and being active? Adding in the exercise you describe, I would be losing about a pound a week if not more. Were you losing weight when you were eating that little, or is there some medical reason you weren’t?

    I was wondering about this as well. When I graduated from high school, I was 5'9" and 130 lbs and was very active. I was a very enthusiastic eater and still struggled to keep my weight up. OP, over what time period were you eating & exercising at those levels? How much weight did you lose in that time?
  • Smiler_85Smiler_85 Member Posts: 11 Member Member Posts: 11 Member
    That's an incredible story, what hell you must have gone through...

    It's great that you're in a much better place now, I'm sure it took a lot of inner strength and determination to get there, especially while you were feeling so low.

    Well done you :)
  • collectingbluescollectingblues Member Posts: 2,532 Member Member Posts: 2,532 Member
    try2again wrote: »
    try2again wrote: »
    Goodness, I’m very sorry you had to go through that and are still living with the consequences. May I ask a question? Like you, I’m 5’8” and 135 is very near ideal healthy weight for me (actually most calculators say 137). How were you maintaining at that weight while eating 1000 calories and being active? Adding in the exercise you describe, I would be losing about a pound a week if not more. Were you losing weight when you were eating that little, or is there some medical reason you weren’t?

    I was wondering about this as well. When I graduated from high school, I was 5'9" and 130 lbs and was very active. I was a very enthusiastic eater and still struggled to keep my weight up. OP, over what time period were you eating & exercising at those levels? How much weight did you lose in that time?

    @try2again

    I had been thin my entire life without effort, had been athletic: tennis, volleyball, and swim team. I had been active duty Air Force.

    I gained a little weight with a pregnancy (miscarried). Maybe six months, a little less. Had lost 10-15 lbs. Sorry, this was over 20 years ago and an extremely stressful time of life, and my memory before heart failure doesn't stand out as much. Due to the traumatic events, the details around the actual heart failure stand out the most.

    Heart failure wasn't caused by how much I weighed at my height/age or what size I wore. These factors had nothing to do with my heart failure... It was caused due to the low calories combined with exercise.

    I understand that. I am just surprised that at such a low calorie level, over a significant amount of time, that your weight did not drop to concerning levels, as @rheddmobile pointed out.

    At any rate, I am very sorry you had to experience this, and it's a warning that many on MFP should heed. It's frustrating to hear people say something to the effect of, "I can't be hurting my body- I feel great"... right up until they don't. :(

    She does say that she periodically binged. I bet that unless she logged those binges, weighed and tracked, blah blah blah, that she was averaging more calories than she thought.

    Water weight can also have an impact, but I agree with you that the low calories don't appear to actually be as low as the OP thought they were...

    But yes. Very sorry you experienced this, Emma.
  • try2againtry2again Member Posts: 3,560 Member Member Posts: 3,560 Member
    try2again wrote: »
    try2again wrote: »
    Goodness, I’m very sorry you had to go through that and are still living with the consequences. May I ask a question? Like you, I’m 5’8” and 135 is very near ideal healthy weight for me (actually most calculators say 137). How were you maintaining at that weight while eating 1000 calories and being active? Adding in the exercise you describe, I would be losing about a pound a week if not more. Were you losing weight when you were eating that little, or is there some medical reason you weren’t?

    I was wondering about this as well. When I graduated from high school, I was 5'9" and 130 lbs and was very active. I was a very enthusiastic eater and still struggled to keep my weight up. OP, over what time period were you eating & exercising at those levels? How much weight did you lose in that time?

    @try2again

    I had been thin my entire life without effort, had been athletic: tennis, volleyball, and swim team. I had been active duty Air Force.

    I gained a little weight with a pregnancy (miscarried). Maybe six months, a little less. Had lost 10-15 lbs. Sorry, this was over 20 years ago and an extremely stressful time of life, and my memory before heart failure doesn't stand out as much. Due to the traumatic events, the details around the actual heart failure stand out the most.

    Heart failure wasn't caused by how much I weighed at my height/age or what size I wore. These factors had nothing to do with my heart failure... It was caused due to the low calories combined with exercise.

    I understand that. I am just surprised that at such a low calorie level, over a significant amount of time, that your weight did not drop to concerning levels, as @rheddmobile pointed out.

    At any rate, I am very sorry you had to experience this, and it's a warning that many on MFP should heed. It's frustrating to hear people say something to the effect of, "I can't be hurting my body- I feel great"... right up until they don't. :(

    She does say that she periodically binged. I bet that unless she logged those binges, weighed and tracked, blah blah blah, that she was averaging more calories than she thought.

    Water weight can also have an impact, but I agree with you that the low calories don't appear to actually be as low as the OP thought they were...

    But yes. Very sorry you experienced this, Emma.

    Your comment also made me think of refeeding syndrome, another situation people should be aware of:

    https://www.healthline.com/health/refeeding-syndrome
    edited August 2019
  • collectingbluescollectingblues Member Posts: 2,532 Member Member Posts: 2,532 Member
    try2again wrote: »
    That woo button can't be gone fast enough.

    Yeah, the two of us apparently touched a nerve.
  • collectingbluescollectingblues Member Posts: 2,532 Member Member Posts: 2,532 Member
    try2again wrote: »
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    try2again wrote: »
    try2again wrote: »
    Goodness, I’m very sorry you had to go through that and are still living with the consequences. May I ask a question? Like you, I’m 5’8” and 135 is very near ideal healthy weight for me (actually most calculators say 137). How were you maintaining at that weight while eating 1000 calories and being active? Adding in the exercise you describe, I would be losing about a pound a week if not more. Were you losing weight when you were eating that little, or is there some medical reason you weren’t?

    I was wondering about this as well. When I graduated from high school, I was 5'9" and 130 lbs and was very active. I was a very enthusiastic eater and still struggled to keep my weight up. OP, over what time period were you eating & exercising at those levels? How much weight did you lose in that time?

    @try2again

    I had been thin my entire life without effort, had been athletic: tennis, volleyball, and swim team. I had been active duty Air Force.

    I gained a little weight with a pregnancy (miscarried). Maybe six months, a little less. Had lost 10-15 lbs. Sorry, this was over 20 years ago and an extremely stressful time of life, and my memory before heart failure doesn't stand out as much. Due to the traumatic events, the details around the actual heart failure stand out the most.

    Heart failure wasn't caused by how much I weighed at my height/age or what size I wore. These factors had nothing to do with my heart failure... It was caused due to the low calories combined with exercise.

    I understand that. I am just surprised that at such a low calorie level, over a significant amount of time, that your weight did not drop to concerning levels, as @rheddmobile pointed out.

    At any rate, I am very sorry you had to experience this, and it's a warning that many on MFP should heed. It's frustrating to hear people say something to the effect of, "I can't be hurting my body- I feel great"... right up until they don't. :(

    She does say that she periodically binged. I bet that unless she logged those binges, weighed and tracked, blah blah blah, that she was averaging more calories than she thought.

    Water weight can also have an impact, but I agree with you that the low calories don't appear to actually be as low as the OP thought they were...

    But yes. Very sorry you experienced this, Emma.

    But if that's true, part of the implication may be that utra-low calories most of the time, plus high exercise, can be a major health risk even if periodic binges take calories to a moderate average calorie level and to overall slower weight loss.

    More sobering, even.

    Thank you for sharing your story, Emma. I'm sorry you had to go through this.

    Absolutely. It's a terrible idea, no matter how you look at it. :(

    Agreed. Even if the root cause was the electrolyte shifts from what essentially was bingeing, and using exercise to purge, it's still horrible.
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