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Eating Disorders If you or someone close to you is struggling with an eating disorder, reach out here to ask questions or to receive support for recovery.

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DomoKay Offline
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Health Risks? - May 2nd 2016, 02:38 PM

A lot of my friends believe that I have an eating disorder or have at least "disordered eating". I will go days without eating in hopes to lose weight. It consumes my every thought. I am always checking myself in the mirror to see if I look fat and stuff... I hate my body and self.

What are the health risks of restricted eating? How serious is this...?




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Re: Health Risks? - May 3rd 2016, 06:32 AM

I honestly don't give this kind of advice anymore because I generally suck at it, but I care about you and your wellbeing. I'm also going to try not to sound too harsh or mean because this is something I care a lot about and you (duh).

Honestly, it can become very serious if restriction continues. Coming from someone who has experienced this, the restriction gets worse and more restrictive. Can't diagnose you, obviously. Though going days without eating hoping to lose weight, being consumed by thoughts of food, weight, etc., body checking, and hating yourself? None of that is healthy and will take its toll on your body and mind over time.

Here's a c&p list of the less severe health consequences of an eating disorder, particularly the restrictive type.
Quote:
  • Fatigue and lack of energy
  • Skin problems
  • Dizziness and headaches
  • Dehydration
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cold hands and feet
  • Bloating
  • Constipation
  • Hair loss
  • Stomach pains
  • Decreased metabolic rate (*my note* might not be that serious, but this means that the more weeks, months, and years you restrict to lose weight the more you're going to have to restrict to lose more and keep off said weight.)
  • Edema (water retention)
  • Growth or Lanugo (fine downy hair)
  • Amenorrhea (loss of menstruation)
  • Irregular menses
Here is a c&p of the more severe health consequences.

Quote:
  • Low pulse and blood pressure (*my note* overtime your heart literally changes to accommodate how much harder it has to work now that you are starving it of vital nutrients.)
  • Irregular heartbeats
  • Low blood sugar
  • Loss of bone mass
  • Kidney and liver damage (*my note* and basically every other major organ in your body.)
  • Osteoporosis (*my note* basically your bones degenerate into that of an 80 year old while you're still in your 20s).
  • Insomnia
  • Anemia
  • Infertility
  • Depression
  • Electrolyte imbalances
  • Low potassium, the most common cause of nocturnal cardiac arrest
  • Cardiac arrest
  • Death
Eating disorders are the most deadly mental illnesses out there. The promises of being happy in life or with yourself at a lower weight are lies being told to you. Maybe the point you're at right now doesn't seem serious or just seems like "disorder eating", but 9 times out of 10 things only escalate.

It seems like this is a struggle for you and I get the wanting to lose weight and restricting for other reasons, but it isn't worth the trouble it causes. I don't want to make this too personal because this is about you, but I'll tell you some of what I experienced. My restricting started as anorexia and it turned into binges and purging during recovery. That is pretty much an entire different eating disorder than what I started out with. I might have a different disorder, but a lot of the health consequences of the first stayed with added health consequences from the newly developed one. I had a point with going into my own life. Get help now because it only gets worse as you continue down this road. There's different ways to help yourself or with help from a professional (recommended, if you can). I'm not a professional so it might not be an eating disorder, but it could be. Better to get rid of unhealthy habits or get treatment as soon as you can, you know?

But those are the health consequences for anyone that continually and repeatedly restricts their intake, eating disorder or not. All I know as a non-professional is that the sooner you stop restricting and create a better relationship with yourself the better. Hope that helped.


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Re: Health Risks? - May 9th 2016, 01:55 AM

I guess I am like hesitant to get treatment because I don't feel like I'm bad enough. I don't think I fit the criteria for anorexia. I'm not willing to eat 3 meals a day. So what now?




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Re: Health Risks? - May 9th 2016, 04:24 AM

Getting treatment is your best bet. It is likely that a clinic will take you even if you don't meet all the criteria for Anorexia. I've been to treatment and there at varying degrees of their disorder. Some people are underweight, some people are normal weight and some people are overweight.

The thing is, that no matter what weight you are or how bad you think it is there are dangers that come along with having an eating disorder.

If you can get help now you might not get to the point where you experience the really bad side effects such as death. But, if you don't seek treatment you will get to that point.

Getting help is a hard step to take and it's scary but this can kill you.


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Re: Health Risks? - May 11th 2016, 07:53 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by DomoKay View Post
I guess I am like hesitant to get treatment because I don't feel like I'm bad enough. I don't think I fit the criteria for anorexia. I'm not willing to eat 3 meals a day. So what now?
There is no such thing as "not bad enough" to see a doctor when it comes to eating disorders, and there are more eating disorders than just anorexia. There is even a miscellaneous disorder (not the official name.)

Eating disorders are not just vastly unhealthy, they're counter-productive. While there is temporary weight loss, if you recover you'll gain weight faster than ever, due to a change in metabolism. The best best for your health, both mental and physical, is to get help as soon as you can.
   
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