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Risks Of Rapid Weight Loss: Is It Really Worth It?

The concern with fast weight loss is that it usually takes extraordinary efforts in diet and exercise — efforts that could be unhealthy and that you probably can't maintain as permanent lifestyle changes.

'Drop 5 kgs in a week', 'Eat as much as you want and still lose weight' - even though we know that losing weight quickly is not healthy, we are still enticed by these offers. Of course we would be tempted, who wouldn't want to just get rid of all their excess fat at one go! Yes, weight loss shortcuts are every bit as tempting as that Ferrero Rocher sitting in your fridge, but crash dieting will ruin your health AND it will not give you the body of your dreams.

You have a wedding coming up and the thought of your friends’ envious faces when you strut in wearing that slinky number has you salivating – and for once it’s not for food! You don’t have much time, but you know that you can do this if you give it all you got, but this is when you need to stop and think – just because you CAN do it, it doesn’t mean that you SHOULD. Losing weight rapidly will cause some serious health damage and what’s worse is that it won’t give you that hot bod either! Here’s how losing weight quickly will affect you.

Lowers Metabolism

“Studies show that rapid weight loss causes the metabolic rate to drop to 86% within 14 days”
The higher your metabolism, the more calories you burn, it’s just that simple! But drastic weight loss decreases the production of the thyroid hormone (T3), which regulates your metabolism. Studies show that rapid weight loss causes T3 levels to decrease to 72% of the baseline level and this results in the metabolic rate dropping to 86% within 14 days. As long as your metabolic rate is lower, you will expend fewer calories during your day and your weight loss progress will stall.

Causes Loose Skin

“Rapid weight loss causes loose skin due to damage done to the elastic fibers in the skin”
Your skin contains elastic fibers that allow it to expand and shrink as and when required. But when you lose weight too quickly, your skin is not able to shrink quickly enough and so you are more likely to experience saggy skin. Research shows that patients with massive weight loss have weak skin due to damage to the elastic fibers and so you need to give your skin the time to heal, so that you are not left with folds of excess skin.

Causes Muscle Loss

“Losing weight rapidly causes you to lose approximately 3 times more muscle as compared to a healthy weight loss program”
When you follow a long-term healthy weight loss plan, 75% of the weight you lose is due to fat loss. But if you decide to speed up your weight loss by dropping your calorie intake to below your minimum calorie intake, your body breaks down your muscle to obtain the required energy. Research shows that losing weight rapidly causes you to lose approximately 3 times more muscle as compared to a healthy weight loss program.

Damages The Liver

“It is estimated that 24% of people who lose more than 1.6 kgs a week will develop portal inflammation or fibrosis of the liver”
Rapid weight loss can lead to serious liver damage and even liver failure. Researchers studied the effects of a low-calorie diet plan and quick weight loss on liver function. They found that 24% of the patients who lost more than 1.6 kgs bodyweight a week developed portal inflammation or fibrosis of the liver.

Harms The Heart

“Rapid weight loss increases the risk of heart palpitations, cardiac stress, and other heart problems”
Crash dieting and rapid weight loss increases the risk of heart palpitations, cardiac stress, and other heart problems. Scientists found that yoyo dieters were in the highest risk group as the repeated shrinking and expansion of blood vessels causes micro tears that can result in atherosclerosis and other types of heart disease. Preliminary research also suggests that this type of extreme dieting affects cholesterol levels and increases the risk of heart attack.

Your Metabolism Takes a Nosedive

Losing a lot of weight too rapidly kicks your body into survival mode, where it makes certain adaptations to slow energy use. The National Institutes of Health researchers witnessed this during an experiment with obese subjects who rapidly lost a large amount of weight. The study found participants experienced a highly significant decline in resting metabolic rate -- which refers to the amount of calories you burn at rest. The decrease was out of proportion to the amount of weight lost and persisted after participants reached their goal weight. Researchers concluded this significant decrease in metabolism can put you at risk for regaining weight.

Could Throw Fluid Balance Out of Whack

Maintaining the right balance of electrolytes is crucial to your health. At least initially, when you lose a significant amount of weight too quickly, much of it consists of water. Rapid fluid loss can disrupt the balance of minerals since the body excretes sodium in order to get rid of water. Your muscles, including your heart muscle, depend on the proper electrolyte balance. Electrolytes carry an electrical charge and play a role in helping your muscles contract and your heart beat properly

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