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Is promoting weight loss dangerous?

bathsheba_cbathsheba_c Posts: 1,862Member Member Posts: 1,862Member Member
Consider this:
-The human body has evolved to favor weight gain in order to avoid starvation.
-Calorie deprivation experiments have shown that even fairly small reductions in food intake can cause psychological distress, including hoarding behaviors.
-Eating disorders are the deadliest of all mental illnesses due to high rates of suicide and permanent damage to internal organs.
-Not eating enough stressed the body, which weakens the immune system and damages the cardiovascular system.
-Almost no one who loses weight keeps it off long-term.
-Being “overweight” after a certain age is protective against early death.

In light of the above, is it actually responsible to promote weight loss? Or would it be more responsible to encourage people to eat a balanced diet and exercise without looking at the scale?
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Replies

  • fuzzylop_fuzzylop_ Posts: 45Member, Premium Member Posts: 45Member, Premium Member
    All cause mortality due in part to obesity is much higher than the consequences of weight loss (and so-called diet culture) so it seems to me like at the absolute worst, it's the lesser of two evils. Additionally, I think knowledge of how much you eat is helpful to a point. That said, I've been pretty convinced that it shouldn't be something you do forever mostly from some things Eric Helms has written about (particularly the podcast in Nov 2018 he did with Jake Linardon).
  • paperpuddingpaperpudding Posts: 5,168Member Member Posts: 5,168Member Member
    Consider this:
    -The human body has evolved to favor weight gain in order to avoid starvation.
    -Calorie deprivation experiments have shown that even fairly small reductions in food intake can cause psychological distress, including hoarding behaviors.
    -Eating disorders are the deadliest of all mental illnesses due to high rates of suicide and permanent damage to internal organs.
    -Not eating enough stressed the body, which weakens the immune system and damages the cardiovascular system.
    -Almost no one who loses weight keeps it off long-term.
    -Being “overweight” after a certain age is protective against early death.

    In light of the above, is it actually responsible to promote weight loss? Or would it be more responsible to encourage people to eat a balanced diet and exercise without looking at the scale?

    I know in our medical centre we dont actually promote weight loss - we promote weight management - which means doing what you need to do to be a healthy weight for you.

    For most people this is either lose weight or maintain current weight. For a few, it is gain weight.

    Yes being SLIGHTLY over weight can be better for some older people and weight loss might not be the best goal for them

    But we are talking there about a small demographic: people 70 + with a BMI of 26/27 ish - not being obese.

    So, in short- yes, indvidualised goals.

    But not avoid promoting weight loss for people who should lose weight - as your post seems to be suggesting

  • psychod787psychod787 Posts: 2,698Member, Premium Member Posts: 2,698Member, Premium Member
    No it's not dangerous. Yes, our body does fight weight loss, but our environment is just as important. The body does make you want to eat more after weight loss. Kevin Hall has showed this. Yes, metabolic adaptation is real. The environment gives us high calorie density cheap food. It's hard, but not impossible.
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