Plate with a small piece of broccoli
Health + Wellness,  Lifestyle

Why Starving Your Way to a Size Zero is Not Helping You

“Maybe, if I don’t eat for one month straight, I could totally rock that bodycon dress at the party”. 

We’ve all been there, haven’t we? Starving our way to a perfect fit every now and then, believing that not eating for long hours is the fastest way to lose that extra inch. Well, sure–it might be. But it is also the fastest way to disturb your body’s metabolism–which could lead to something worse. 

Nourishment is a complex mechanism, which involves much more than just eating food. It is a combination of your psychological state, situational conditions, and biochemical signals being sent from your brain to your body and vice versa. It involves both hunger and appetite. Yes–they are not the same thing! Hunger is the physical need for food, whereas appetite is the general desire for food. 

When we starve for a considerably long time, the body adapts itself to fulfill its energy requirements with less and less food and adjusts its metabolic rate accordingly. To be precise, continuous starvation slows down our body’s Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). With a slowed BMR, whenever we switch to our normal diet again or consume an increased amount of carbohydrates, even for a few days, our body tends to store the excess energy in different forms, which include the fatty deposits throughout our body along with extra glycogen stored in our liver. So basically, we are not only defying the very purpose for which we started our dieting but also stressing our other organs as well.

Angry woman biting a measuring tape
Photo by Nensuria/Freepik

Everyone is aware of how trauma, anxiety and emotional stress can cause eating disorders in people. It’s basically the disturbed stability of our mind overriding our feeling of ‘fullness’. But what we are missing is how the instability of our diet can cause emotional stress and anxiety in return. Forcing our body to meet its requirements without providing it with what it needs, messes with the biochemical signals being sent from the gut to the brain; resulting in an agitated and anxious state of mind. 

It will be safe for me to state at this moment that starvation not only deprives your body of its immediate needs but also triggers your brain to develop unhealthy eating patterns–leaving you in a never-ending loop of unhealthy body and mind. Understanding what it’s like to worry about our body, or how we want to look in a particular dress, I must add that adopting unhealthy practices for immediate and short-term goals should never be an option. Eat well, stay healthy, and did I forget to tell you that you would look absolutely amazing in absolutely any dress?

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