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"setpoint" vs healthy BMI and intuitive eating with PCOS



  • threewinsthreewins Member Posts: 625 Member Member Posts: 625 Member
    If you define set point as a weight you are where your weight is stable, without weighing yourself or trying to lose/gain weight. I was an example of that before the age of about 24. I had no idea what I weighed. I didn't try to lose weight, I would over eat on special occasions. My clothing never got tighter. Not looser.

    For those who don't believe in the set point, why was my weight stable? I always used the same hole for my belt.
  • psychod787psychod787 Member, Premium Posts: 3,625 Member Member, Premium Posts: 3,625 Member
    It has actually been a source of fascination. SOOOOO... here we go. Human body weight is almost simple as calories in and calories out, but not quite. As we gain weight our tdee goes up and appetite generally goes down. Its all according if someone is at a set range for their environment. So, lets say you eat 5000 calories one day, your appetite may not be as high a few days later. Generally not the next day in humans. That activity is seen more in rats. So, you might eat 5000 today and balance it mostly out over a few days. The body is pretty good at balancing calories in most folks, but not perfect. So lets say your tdee is 2000, your appetite goes down by only 2900 calories over the course of the week. That's only a 100 calorie surplus for the week. Repeat that over a month and that is 400 calories a month. That's 1-2lbs gained in year, which is almost the average weight gain for a woman from the age of 20 to 40 in the USA. The same happens when most people under eat. There will be a hyper compensation effect the next day or a few days later, this one has not been studied as well as the former. So, as fat cells get larger they produce more of a hormone called Leptin. If the fat cells get smaller, they produce less of it. Leptin is sensed in the hypothalamus and controls our energy expenditure and appetite So, as one loses weight, tdee decreases until a new equilibrium is reached.
  • RaegoldRaegold Member Posts: 182 Member Member Posts: 182 Member
    OP here- so happy for all of the responses.

    Definitely makes sense, what many have said.... How can you define "set point" when you aren't in a vacuum and have varying environmental factors that would affect your food choices, activity level, etc.

    The other day I was looking through some YouTube videos and there are a lot of body positivity vlogs, and people who stopped dieting. While I'm on board with body positivity in general, I kinda think it's doing a disservice to some of these young girls who will statistically be at higher risk for multiple health problems. That's the weird part about it to me- like where is the line between body positivity and being healthy, especially when factoring in real medical problems (PCOS, high cholesterol, etc).

    I was convinced that my hunger signals are WAY out of sync with my actual needs ... But having read some of the responses, I feel like in a hunter gatherer situation where I didn't have access to the foods I have now, maybe it would be different. I do remember reading somewhere that PCOS does lead to disordered leptin, but I read that a while ago and don't remember the details.
    edited July 25
  • amusedmonkeyamusedmonkey Member Posts: 10,199 Member Member Posts: 10,199 Member
    I can only share my experience as someone with PCOS and who has experienced what it's like to have hormonal hunger (the kind that can't be sated even after a large meal). I used to be super morbidly obese and now I've settled on an overweight weight I'm happy with and maintaining.

    I have never been "body negative" even at my highest weight, so thankfully, I did not need to work on that part. You can be body positive and still choose to diet. It's a matter of perspective. Dieting is not a punishment, and losing weight doesn't mean your worth is defined by your weight anymore than it is defined by your haircut.

    Yes, intuitive eating can be helpful when someone is dealing with certain mental issues, but it's not the intuitive eating that solves problem nor dieting that causes it, healing the mental pain is what solves it and prodding it is what makes it worse. If someone doesn't work on their mental hurdles they're only replacing one set of rules with another and intuitive eating becomes just another dieting (or anti dieting) practice, and the pain remains.

    I used to maintain my super morbidly obese weight with ease, now I'm maintaining my overweight weight with relative ease because my current weight is relatively easy to maintain with my current set of habits. I chose this weight because that's as far as I'm willing to go with habit changes (plus I like the overweight look). Either my setpoint has changed, if that's what you prefer to call it, or the whole theory is a cop out.

    Of course, there are genetic, physical, environmental, developmental...etc factors that make a certain weight harder to achieve or maintain, but almost anyone can realistically stop being obese without running themselves into the ground while working on their mental health.
  • threewinsthreewins Member Posts: 625 Member Member Posts: 625 Member
    Some people may find this article interesting on why some people don't gain weight
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