This is such an important topic that we want to be perfectly clear.
Regardless of how much you want to do it, losing weight too fast is not good for your physical and mental health.
There are many reasons, studies and evidence to prove it, but we’ll get to some of those later. First, let’s just clarify exactly what we’re talking about.
What is Too Fast When Losing Weight?
Everyone is different and we all carry more or less weight. But the generally accepted guideline for safe, healthy weight loss is losing one to two pounds per week.
That said, you may lose more or less than that during a particular week at different times in your weight management program. For example, when you start, you will likely lose a lot of water weight and it may exceed two pounds a week. Later on, your weight loss might slow down, or even “plateau”, even though you continue to stick to your program
Occasional increases and decreases in the rate at which you lose weight do not necessarily indicate rapid weight loss, or that you will suffer any ill-health effects from it. But if you find eating plans promising that you will lose five pounds a week, or 30 pounds a month, stay away from them.
This is true for any weight loss tips and programs. It doesn’t matter if it’s a famous plan like a Keto diet, a low-carb diet, a short-term program of intense physical activity, or drastically cutting your calorie intake. The health risks when you lose weight quickly aren’t about how you lose the weight, but about losing too much weight too soon.
This is Why Losing Weight Fast Can be Bad for You
The basic problem with fast weight loss is that your health depends on your body not being stressed. And it gets very stressed when it thinks it’s not getting the nutrition and energy it needs to stay healthy. Then it starts doing everything it can to fight what it sees as a threat to its existence.
- Slows Down Your Metabolism – Your body is really smart. If you lose weight so fast that it thinks it is going through a shortage of energy, it will automatically start to conserve energy. That means slowing down your metabolism, so you burn fewer calories each day.
The problem with that is, even as you cut calories, you may not lose any weight, and you’ll be tempted to cut even more calories, further slowing your metabolism. And potentially further damaging your health.
- Lowers Your Energy Levels – Hand in hand with burning fewer calories, your body will make it difficult for you to even want to burn calories by lowering your energy levels. This can make you feel listless, unmotivated, irritable, even cold.
- Interrupt Your Sleep – Getting seven to nine hours of sleep a night is crucial for your health whether or not you’re trying to lose weight. Your body’s search for alternatives to the shortage of nutrients and energy can keep you awake at night.
- Shed Your Hair – Your body can start shutting down systems that aren’t essential if it doesn’t get the nutrients it needs to run them. For example, healthy hair growth depends on you getting adequate amounts of iron, zinc and protein from your diet.
If you don’t, your body might just start shedding your hair. The lack of certain nutrients can affect other bodily systems and functions, including the interruption of menstrual cycles in women.
- Affect Your Mental Health – This can happen on two levels. First, without adequate nutrition and energy, your brain and emotions suffer as much as any other part of your body. This, coupled with facing all the other challenges of losing weight too fast, can lead to bouts of depression and anxiety.
The path to healthy weight loss starts at your nearest Herbal One Centre. Nutritional consultants are ready to help you make the right food choices for healthy weight loss.
To learn more about healthily losing weight, check out our article “5 Ways to Lower Your Calorie Intake Without Even Noticing”.