Are You An Under- Eater? Find out how to recognize the signs of under- eating. This is a guest post written by staff dietitian Laura Schoenfeld, MPH, RD. Woman Sad about Dieting. In our modern society with its seemingly endless supply of fast food and junk food, it seems obvious to most why we.
Cheap, low quality food surrounds us, and there. While most people would find it hard to believe that many of the health problems people experience when going Paleo is from a lack of calories and appropriate macronutrients, I. Quite the opposite of the ? Learn the most common signs and symptoms of a too- low calorie intake! Could inadequate food intake be the reason why your Paleo diet suddenly isn?
Read on to discover if you might simply need some more food to start feeling better today! Your Weight Isn. You might be surprised to hear that I. In fact, many of my clients come to me on extremely low calorie diets (around 1.
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Crossfit or long distance running. For good reason, they are extremely frustrated that their weight isn. Many of these clients are also eating a very low carbohydrate diet with the goal of losing weight quickly. We. But the fact is, they simply can.
Why is this? While a slight caloric deficit can lead to sustainable weight loss (think 3. Your body does not like major, drastic changes, and it will make modifications to your thyroid, adrenal, and sex hormones in order to reduce your overall caloric output. This includes reducing active thyroid hormone, shutting down sex hormone production, and raising stress hormones like cortisol. The most common issue that comes from chronic under- eating is hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. Hypoglycemia is defined as blood sugar below 7. L, though some people experience symptoms at higher blood sugar levels.
Common symptoms include hunger, shakiness, anxiety, dizziness, sweating, weakness, confusion, and changes in mood. Under- eating can easily cause hypoglycemia, especially when combined with exercise. This urban slang refers to the state of anger and irritability resulting from being hungry. Since the brain requires blood sugar to function optimally, when it starts to drop, one of the first cognitive processes that suffers is self- control. This is especially common in peri- menopausal women who seem to be especially prone to poor sleep despite generally good sleep hygiene and a health conscious lifestyle. Oddly enough, one of the first symptoms that changes when I get my clients eating a more calorically appropriate diet is a significant improvement in sleep duration and quality. One reason for this likely comes from the improved blood sugar control that arises from an appropriate calorie and carbohydrate intake.
As your blood sugar drops overnight, your liver must release its stored glucose (in the form of glycogen) to keep your blood sugar steady. If these stress hormones elevate high enough, they can actually wake you up in the middle of the night. Making sure you. The most obvious is that feces is made up of waste matter from the digestion of food, so if you. The less obvious, but more likely reason that under- eating can lead to constipation is due to the effects of undernutrition on thyroid hormone. As I discussed previously, under- eating causes a down regulation of T3, the active thyroid hormone. This can lead to a condition called euthyroid sick syndrome, where T3 is low, reverse T3 is high, and TSH and T4 are often normal.
This means your body develops hypothyroidism symptoms without necessarily showing any change in the typical thyroid function markers that most doctors check. Constipation is a very common symptom of hypothyroidism, as active thyroid hormone helps stimulate peristalsis in the gut, keeping digestion humming along smoothly. When T3 drops, gut motility slows, and this can lead to chronic constipation. Whether or not this extends our lifespan, who wants to constantly feel frigid on a daily basis? Low insulin can also lead to low body temperature, so some people on a very low carbohydrate diet will experience this symptom as well.
It is exacerbated by the hormonal changes that develop from chronic under- eating, including a drop in sex hormones like progesterone, testosterone, and estrogen. Even in our test group of 3. Consuming a calorically appropriate, protein- rich, nutrient- dense whole foods diet should be the first step for anyone who wants to stop hair loss in its tracks. How Much Should You Be Eating? Determining exactly how many calories you need to be eating on a daily basis for optimal health and weight control is tricky. Many factors come into play, including your physical activity, stress levels, sleep adequacy, history of chronic disease, and more. Use this calculator to determine your .
Different workouts will burn different amounts of calories. A Crossfit WOD can burn 1.
WOD that takes 2. Many of my female clients are shocked to hear that breastfeeding can raise your caloric expenditure by 5. Using myself as an example, my . Your mileage may vary, but it.
When I work with clients, my goal is to get them on the least restrictive, most calorically- appropriate diet possible. Sign up for a 1 hour comprehensive case review and we. Find the right amount of food intake that works best for you, and don. Did you ever experience health improvements from increasing your calorie intake?
Share your story below! About Laura. Growing up with a family that practices Weston A. Price principles of nutrition, she understands the foods and cooking practices that make up a nutrient dense diet. With her strong educational background in biochemistry, clinical nutrition, and research translation, she blends current scientific evidence with traditional food practices to? Sign up for FREE updates delivered to your inbox. I hate spam too. Your email is safe with me.
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Think skinny people don’t get type 2 diabetes? Think again. i. Stock. In the last article we discussed the complex relationship between body weight and type 2 diabetes (T2. DM). We learned that although obesity is strongly associated with T2. DM, a subset of “metabolically healthy obese” (MHO) people have normal blood sugar and insulin sensitivity and don’t ever develop diabetes. In this article we’re going to talk about the mirror reflection of the MHO: the “metabolically unhealthy nonobese” (MUN). These are lean people with either full- fledged type 2 diabetes or some metabolic dysfunction, such as insulin resistance.
You might even be surprised to learn that skinny people can and do get T2. DM. They are rarely mentioned in the media, and there isn’t much written about them in the scientific literature. Perhaps these folks have been overlooked because type 2 diabetes has been historically viewed as a disease of gluttony and sloth, a self- inflicted outcome of eating too much and not and not exercising enough. But the very existence of the MUN phenotype proves that there’s more to T2. DM than overeating and a sedentary lifestyle.
Remember that one in three type 2 diabetics are undiagnosed. It’s possible that a significant number of these people that are lean. They don’t suspect they might have T2. DM because they’re under the impression that it’s not a condition that affects thin people.
This is one of the biggest dangers of the myth that “only fat people get diabetes”. It’s well- known that high blood sugar can precede the development of T2. DM for as long as ten years.
It is during this time that many of the complications associated with diabetes – nerve damage, retinal changes, and early signs of kidney deterioration – begin to develop. This is why it’s just as important for lean people to maintain healthy blood sugar as it is for the overweight and obese. It’s also important to understand that diabetes is not a disease. Every single person with T2. DM, whether they are rail thin or morbidly obese, shares a single symptom: high blood sugar. Therefore, anything that interferes with the body’s regulation of blood sugar levels will cause type 2 diabetes.
What causes high blood sugar and T2. DM in lean people?
Not surprisingly, the causes of T2. DM in lean people are similar to the causes of T2.
DM in the obese. They can be loosely grouped into the following categories: Genetics. Fatty liver. Inflammation. Autoimmunity. Stress.
Let’s discuss each of them in turn. Genetics. Studies of the lean, otherwise healthy offspring of type 2 diabetics has revealed that they are much more likely to be insulin resistant than the lean offspring of non- diabetics. One explanation for this is an inherited defect that causes mitochondrial dysfunction. People with this defect are not able to burn glucose or fatty acids efficiently, which causes lipotoxicity and an accumulation of fat inside of muscle cells. I will discuss the contribution of genetics in more detail in the next article. What I want you to understand here is that the genetic mechanisms I described above are capable of causing insulin resistance and high blood sugar independently of overweight or obesity. Fatty liver. Studies of lean, Asian Indian men have found that they have a 3- to 4- fold higher incidence of insulin resistance than their caucasian counterparts.
They also have a much higher prevalence of non- alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD) and hepatic (liver) insulin resistance. NAFLD is an independent predictor of type 2 diabetes. Cross- sectional studies have shown that fatty liver and metabolic abnormalities occur together. It has also been proposed that fatty liver is not just a result, but also a cause of insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. Now, keep in mind that these Asian Indian men with NAFLD were not overweight. They were lean, and in some cases, even underweight. This proves that NAFLD occurs in lean people, and together with the evidence above, suggests that NAFLD may be a primary cause of insulin resistance and T2.
DM in lean people. If you’re thinking NAFLD might be a rare problem confined to Asian Indian men, you should know that up to 3. This is a disturbingly high prevalence of a condition that is known to progress to severe liver inflammation and cancer in a small percentage of people – in addition to contributing to T2. DM and metabolic syndrome.
While there may be a genetic component that predisposes people to developing NAFLD, we also know that dietary factors play a significant role. Rodent studies have shown that feeding large amounts of sugar and industrial seed oils (like corn, safflower, sunflower, etc.) promote NAFLD, whereas saturated fats such as butter and coconut oil do not. And in human infants, tube- feeding with industrial seed oils causes severe liver damage, whereas the same amount of fat from fish oil does not. Fructose, especially the high- fructose corn syrup (HFCS) found in sodas, candy and several packaged and refined foods, is perhaps the most significant dietary cause of NAFLD. The liver processes fructose by converting it to fat. The more fructose consumed, the more fatty the liver becomes.
Feeding rodents high amounts of fructose promotes NAFLD, and the consumption of soft drinks (by humans) can increase the prevalence of NAFLD independently of metabolic syndrome. Let me say that again: high fructose intake can cause fatty liver disease independently of overweight, obesity or type 2 diabetes. Do you think that might be a problem in a country where soft drinks account for nearly 1.
Since fructose is handled by the liver in the same way the liver handles alcohol, excess fructose produces a similar range of problems as alcohol abuse: hypertension, high triglycerides and low HDL, obesity, cirrhosis and insulin resistance. Inflammation. In the study of lean Asian Indian men above with T2.
DM, it was found that they had a 2- fold increase in plasma levels of the inflammatory protein IL- 6 when compared to lean subjects without T2. DM. In a previous article I showed that chronic, low- grade inflammation associated is an important mechanism in decreasing insulin signaling and causing insulin resistance in muscle, liver and fat cells. Also, inflammation has been shown to precede the development of diabetes. Infusion of inflammatory cytokines into healthy, normal weight mice causes insulin resistance, and people with other chronic inflammatory conditions are at higher risk of developing T2.
DM. For example, about one- third of chronic Hepatitis C patients develop T2. DM, and those with rheumatoid arthritis are also at higher risk. Autoimmunity. Up until recently, type 1 and type 2 diabetes were seen as distinct entities. It was understood that type 1 diabetes (or insulin- dependent diabetes) was caused by autoimmune destruction of the beta cells of the pancreas, leading to decreased insulin production, whereas type 2 diabetes was caused by insulin resistance of the liver, muscle and fat cells. However, recent research has demonstrated that the line separating these two conditions may be much blurrier than previously thought. It is now known that type 1 diabetes, which normally begins in childhood, may slowly develop later in life. This form is referred to as latent autoimmune diabetes (LADA) or more informally as type 1.
Studies suggest that type 1 diabetes in adults is frequently misdiagnosed as T2. DM, and up to 1. 0% of adults with T2. DM may actually have the autoimmune form. Even more relevant to this article is the finding that fully 1 in 4 lean people with T2.
DM produce antibodies to GAD, the same enzyme in the pancreas that is attacked in type 1 autoimmune diabetes. These findings suggest that a significant number of lean people with T2. DM may be suffering from autoimmune diabetes. This will obviously require a different treatment strategy than those who have the non- autoimmune form. It’s a fairly standard blood test and is available through Labcorp and Quest.)(Interestingly enough, approximately 5% of patients with autoimmune thyroid conditions also produce antibodies to GAD. So if you have Hashimoto’s or Graves’ disease along with blood sugar symptoms that don’t respond to dietary changes, you should have your GAD antibodies checked.)Stress.
Under conditions of stress, the body produces higher levels of the hormone cortisol. Cortisol plays a number of important roles, but one of it’s primary functions is to raise blood sugar. This is an incredibly helpful evolutionary mechanism that is part of the “fight or flight” response that prepares us to deal with a challenge or threat. However, that mechanism was only designed for short bursts of stress. Chronic stress as we experience it today – like worrying about getting audited by the IRS, driving in traffic, and suffering from degenerative disease – wasn’t part of our early ancestors’ lives.
This means that our bodies aren’t prepared to deal with the effects of chronic stress, which include chronically elevated levels of cortisol. Why? Because cortisol is capable of raising blood sugar to unhealthy levels even when a person is fasting. What that also means is that you can be lean, eat a perfect diet, and still have high blood sugar (and thus T2.
DM) if you suffer from chronic stress. I’ll be writing more about the connection between stress and diabetes in a future article. Like what you’ve read? Sign up for FREE updates delivered to your inbox. I hate spam too. Your email is safe with me.