If you are trying to lose weight, you cut calories. Right? It would be nice if it was that simple, but it is possible to eat too little. Eating too little can cause physical and mental issues and make it very hard to maintain a healthy weight. Here are several symptoms of under eating.
You’re always tired
This may seem pretty obvious, but if you are low on physical energy, you are probably low on calorie energy. Your body is fueled by the food you eat, so if you do not eat enough you will start to feel tired all the time. Eating too little also probably means you are low on macronutrients, vitamins and minerals. Your body needs all of these things to function properly.
You can’t lose weight
If you are trying to lose weight you do need to be in a calorie deficit, but there is a balance. If you are training too hard or eating too little your body will go into “starvation mode.” Your body wants to live, so when you eat too little it will start conserving energy. This slows your metabolism. Meaning your body will start to burn less calories doing day-to-day tasks. At the start of your diet you may be eating 1,800 calories a day and naturally burning 1,600 (without any additional exercise). But if you start eating less you will naturally burn less. So if you eat 1,000 calories a day, your body may start to burn 900 calories. This becomes hard to maintain and can cause serious health problems. Smaller calorie deficits are all you need to see long-term weight loss. Although dropping your calories significantly will help you see immediate results, the results won’t be lasting because your body can survive off of 1,000 calories a day.
If you are low on calories, you are likely low on fiber. It is hard to eat enough fiber even when you are eating enough… so reduce the amount of calories, and you are almost guaranteed to be low on fiber. Fiber helps keep you regular, so it is very important that you eat enough.
Under eating can cause hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. The brain requires blood sugar to function, so when it drops the body loses self-control. You won’t be able to handle your emotions, stress, and anger. You will always feel like you are on a short fuse and your mood is constantly changing.