Dieting is a healthy practice that helps in managing, monitoring, and regulating body weight and functions. Maintaining an optimum weight is an important parameter for a healthy BMI score (body mass index). Healthy weight is helpful in the prevention of various diseases. People also rely on diets to regulate the amount and volume of food intake. However, unguided or extreme diets tend to do more harm than benefit. It can cause severe complications. Studies indicate that an inadequate supply of minerals and vitamins can cause stress in the brain. Therefore, it is essential to take professional help from dieticians or nutritionists before making or choosing a diet plan. Let’s take a deeper look at the harmful effects of unguided dieting.
Dehydration due to unguided dieting
Dehydration is the deficiency of water and solutes in the body. It can lead to severe weakness, lethargy, headaches, heart palpitations, and loss of energy. When a person is on a low-calorie diet or restricted-carb diet, the body fails to generate the essential amount of energy to meet the requirements. That is why our body burns glycogen (carbohydrates) stored in the liver and muscles to compensate for the loss.
Malnutrition and Deficiency
Our body works on various metabolic processes by using vitamins and minerals obtained from various food sources. However, a person on unguided dieting is likely to face a deficiency of essential vitamins and minerals. Deficiencies of carbohydrates, vitamins (such as A, D, E, and K), minerals (sodium, iron, calcium, and magnesium), proteins, and fats are commonly observed. Malnutrition can lead to defective bone growth, dementia, mental confusion, diarrhea, short-term memory loss, and other severe problems. Therefore, an individual should opt for a balanced diet to supply optimum vitamins and minerals to the body.
Whatever a person consumes, is broken into simpler substances by the process of metabolism. In addition, this process helps in releasing energy. Frequent diets, irregular meal times, low calcium intake, excess consumption of salt, and low-carb diets are some of the factors that decrease the pace of metabolism. Slow metabolism causes an increase in body weight as the body needs to store fats for meeting the needs.
Problems Related to Menstruation
A healthy and balanced diet can cure all the problems related to the menstrual cycle, such as abnormal bleeding, breast swelling, pain, inflammation, and discomfort. That is why it is essential to follow a diet rich in vitamin D, calcium, antioxidants, and essential fatty acids. Studies show that those women who follow unguided diets, end up taking supplements and medications to fight symptoms of PMS. For instance,
- Vitamin E- It helps in reducing menstrual pain by facilitating optimum blood flow.
- Vitamin D- It helps to relieve muscular pain and uplifts mood.
- Calcium- It helps in decreasing the frequency of menstrual cramps and fluid retention. In addition, it helps to address the problems of mood disorders. Similarly, other vitamins and minerals play an essential role.
Low-calorie diets can lead to the formation of gallstones due to the accumulation of cholesterol or bilirubin. Consider a person who chooses an extreme diet for reducing weight. If there is excess weight loss in a short period, the liver secretes more cholesterol. The secreted cholesterol gets accumulated in the form of crystals forming gallstones. Gallstones cause nausea, darkening of urine, severe abdominal pain, diarrhea, bloating, heartburn, indigestion, and clay-colored stools.
Choose A Healthy Way For Weight Loss!
Males and females need 2500 and 2000 calories per day respectively. However, sometimes individuals burn out themselves with low-calorie intake leading to harmful medical conditions. Unguided dieting offers a short-term fictitious solution, but long-term physical and mental problems. In addition, a person can suffer from severe deficiencies of minerals and vitamins. So, focus on sustainable long-term healthy eating habits for maintaining weight and wellness. Therefore, it is important to choose a diet plan according to one’s bodily requirements and necessities. Always ask for the guidance of a dietician or nutritionist. It is a healthy way to lose and manage weight without any side effects or complications. Furthermore, it can lead to several mood disorders such as depression and severe anxiety. Always remember, healthy eating habits and an active lifestyle helps in managing body weight and health. Also read- Understanding the 6 dimensions of holistic health.