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Is promoting weight loss dangerous?

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  • NovusDiesNovusDies Member, Premium Posts: 8,761 Member Member, Premium Posts: 8,761 Member
    NovusDies wrote: »
    people can die from obesity yes, but they can also die from being underweight, or even just by losing weight too quickly/malnutrition(regardless of what weight you are at). along with alot of other people i know, i have a considerable amount of heart conditions caused by dieting and food restriction. it is a very dangerous thing to do, and is often hard to know when to stop

    In our particular moment, the average American is much more at risk from obesity and the risks associated with it than they are from being underweight and the risks associated with that.

    I don't think that anyone is denying that being below a healthy body weight is dangerous. It's just when you look around us, what sets of risks is the average American more likely to be facing *right now*? There is a reason why we're focused on one over the other.

    I'm sorry you know a lot of people with heart conditions associated with food restriction. But if the average American knows someone with a health condition associated with weight, it's going to be a safe bet that it is *excess* weight that is the issue.


    There is a "we're" with regard to being focused on obesity. I am one of the "we're". I am not unconcerned about people who are suffering from being underweight from restriction and the health problems it causes. However, I can not be invested in every cause because if I tried my attention would be diluted to the point I could not actually serve any one cause effectively.

    There should be a "we're" fighting for the people who are suffering from restriction related problems. That cause is also very important. I am not sure if it will be any easier to fix than obesity but the people who feel passionately about it should try. I know a woman that seems to know a good number of people who have suffered and even died from over-restriction. It is kind of odd how that happens. One person knows a good number and I am not sure I know of any.

    Yes, I know many people who have struggled with disordered eating but I don't know anyone (that I know of) that has suffered from serious health consequences associated with restriction. On the other hand, I know multiple people -- just in my family -- who have suffered serious or even fatal consequences from illnesses associated with obesity and I know many other people are struggling with them.

    I'm not trying to say that if someone feels the health consequences of restriction are important that they shouldn't focus on trying to help in that area. The world has so many problems that I think it is okay for people to focus on making something better if they feel passionate about it, there is no obligation to not focus on it just because something else might have a higher number of victims or people impacted.

    It's just that I think arguing that we shouldn't "promote" weight loss because over-restriction has some risks isn't a good argument. Yes, over-restriction has risks and should be avoided. But over-indulgence resulting in obesity has serious risks that impact millions of Americans (and Westerners) and we can't justify ignoring that.

    Weight loss has to be promoted. Obesity is a supporting player in millions of deaths a year. Unfortunately social distancing will not flatten the curve of this, far more prolific, killer.

    The two causes should not be viewed as opposing at all.
  • blue_killenblue_killen Member Posts: 26 Member Member Posts: 26 Member
    im not talking about promoting weight loss to anorexics. but weight loss in people who are overweight can even be dangerous if not done right. i think its important to promote weight loss to an extent but there needs to be more out there on how to do it healthily
  • SuzanMunroSuzanMunro Member Posts: 3 Member Member Posts: 3 Member
    We probably should think of it as fat loss, not weight loss.
    edited June 19
  • magnusthenerdmagnusthenerd Member Posts: 1,198 Member Member Posts: 1,198 Member
    SuzanMunro wrote: »
    We probably should think of it as fat loss, not weight loss.

    Not sure if that really changes much of the potential problems for underweight individuals, particularly not for women. There are levels of too little body fat for women which will cause amenorrhea, along with other hormonal issues, and that tends to lead to bone density loss.

    In men, prolonged low body fat is generally going to cause low hormones too, though if not caused by rapid loss, it is probably less likely to induce sarcopenia, which would be the eventual bad weight loss.
  • robinhager3998robinhager3998 Member Posts: 43 Member Member Posts: 43 Member
    I'm no expert, but I believe some of the statements would be true if caloric intake would be drastically cut. I believe no one should ever eat less than 1500 calories even if it means weighing a little bit more. Some people tend to cut down too much, and I can see where that would do something to you mentally. I'm sure this statement won't be popular, but you can be fat and healthy. Genetics determine your weight more than anything else. This is a proven fact. That being said, I think it would be dangerous if you were extremely obese 300+ lbs or so. Just a 500 calorie a day reduction can make a big difference in your weight over time. This isn't drastic and I think anyone could live with that.
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Member Posts: 24,368 Member Member Posts: 24,368 Member
    I'm no expert, but I believe some of the statements would be true if caloric intake would be drastically cut. I believe no one should ever eat less than 1500 calories even if it means weighing a little bit more. Some people tend to cut down too much, and I can see where that would do something to you mentally. I'm sure this statement won't be popular, but you can be fat and healthy. Genetics determine your weight more than anything else. This is a proven fact. That being said, I think it would be dangerous if you were extremely obese 300+ lbs or so. Just a 500 calorie a day reduction can make a big difference in your weight over time. This isn't drastic and I think anyone could live with that.

    As a sedentary person, I would need 1,460 calories a day to maintain my current weight.

    Now as it happens, I'm not sedentary, so I eat more than that. But let's say something happened and I became sedentary. What harm do you think would come to me if I ate 1,460 a day and maintained my current body weight?
  • ritzvinritzvin Member, Premium Posts: 2,764 Member Member, Premium Posts: 2,764 Member
    I'm no expert, but I believe some of the statements would be true if caloric intake would be drastically cut. I believe no one should ever eat less than 1500 calories even if it means weighing a little bit more. Some people tend to cut down too much, and I can see where that would do something to you mentally. I'm sure this statement won't be popular, but you can be fat and healthy. Genetics determine your weight more than anything else. This is a proven fact. That being said, I think it would be dangerous if you were extremely obese 300+ lbs or so. Just a 500 calorie a day reduction can make a big difference in your weight over time. This isn't drastic and I think anyone could live with that.

    FYI- For someone on the short side, that isn't currently fat, and isn't moderately active → that's higher than maintenance.
    (edit: typo)
    edited June 29
  • janejellyrolljanejellyroll Member Posts: 24,368 Member Member Posts: 24,368 Member
    ritzvin wrote: »
    I'm no expert, but I believe some of the statements would be true if caloric intake would be drastically cut. I believe no one should ever eat less than 1500 calories even if it means weighing a little bit more. Some people tend to cut down too much, and I can see where that would do something to you mentally. I'm sure this statement won't be popular, but you can be fat and healthy. Genetics determine your weight more than anything else. This is a proven fact. That being said, I think it would be dangerous if you were extremely obese 300+ lbs or so. Just a 500 calorie a day reduction can make a big difference in your weight over time. This isn't drastic and I think anyone could live with that.

    FYI- For someone on the short side, that isn't currently fat, and isn't moderately active → that's higher than maintenance.
    (edit: typo)

    Yep, as a not-overweight person, if I was sedentary I'd need 1,460 a day to maintain. I don't think this would be harmful for me as I've been netting that for a few years now (that is, I eat back my exercise calories so that I net what I need to maintain).
  • LoveyCharLoveyChar Member Posts: 1,491 Member Member Posts: 1,491 Member
    I don't think promoting weight loss is dangerous and yes, I'd agree that our ideals of what was fat generations ago has changed in societal norms today (not for all but for many). I remember years ago when Kim Kardashian said she weighed 117 pounds and her sister felt like that was "too skinny." I disagreed. Whose business is it to judge anyway as long as she felt confident and healthy?! Generations ago, if Kim Kardashian had said she weighed 99 pounds, which would have been more typical for the times then, then the sister may have complained at that time too that her sister was "too skinny."

    I have attributed genetics to being smaller. All females in my family, immediate and extended, are small with tallest being 5"2' and everyone hovers around 110 pounds. My grandmother was small. Her mother was small. I'm small. My aunts are small. Then I look at my husband's family and most of them are humongous, absolutely humongous. So do genetics play a role, maybe...but I definitely don't think genetics should be used as an excuse not to lose weight...

    Joints and long term...if I gain 2 or 3 pounds, I can feel the struggle in a run. My speed decreases and it's difficult to power through it with even just a little bit of weight extra. I try to maintain my weight around 105 but it's more for performance and health as opposed to vanity and how cute I'll look in a sundress.

    Calories: 1,500 calories per day would be way too many for my height.
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