Harmful Effects of Dieting

If a child comes to you saying she wants to draw a picture of flowers, and you give her a box of crayons with only two colors in it, she may be disappointed. 

When someone wants to learn how to play the piano, they expect to be taught on an instrument that is fully intact with all its keys. 

Someone who wishes to learn the mechanics of fixing a car would expect her teacher to supply her with the proper tools. 

Dieting is like removing colors from the box of crayons, keys from the piano, and tools from the toolbox–rather than leaving space for the full array of what you need to thrive, it interrupts the natural provisions your system supplies.

Dieting disrupts the holistic flow of information throughout your body, which leads to harmful effects. In this article, we will discuss the harmful effects of dieting and guide you toward the clarity that listening to your body naturally produces. 

The Harmful Effects of Dieting

There are several reasons why dieting is bad for your health and overall well-being. Chief among these are the following:

  1. Nutritional imbalance
  2. Slowed metabolism 
  3. Depression
  4. Increases food craving and the chance of emotional eating, binge eating, and other types of eating disorders 
  5. Keeps you permanently away from your dream

The First Negative Effect of Dieting

The second negative effect of dieting is a slowed metabolism

The main function of metabolism is to change food into energy. When our food choices result in a slow metabolism, the natural effect is that our body begins to gain weight. 

For example, when you choose a diet that calls for the complete elimination of fats, you may think you are lowering calorie intake, which–in turn–will lead to weight loss. This isn’t the case. 

What you may be doing, instead, is choosing foods that are low in fat and high in sugar. Often, when a company touts its food as being low-fat, it is adding sugar as a means of boosting the flavor lost when the fat was removed. To that end, you may be spiking your blood sugar. When your blood sugar spikes, your body stops burning fat because it only burns fat when it senses insulin levels dropping. 

Conversely, when we choose to listen to our bodies, it will tell us plainly which type of food we need and when. There are times when your body will crave fat, and that’s okay. Salmon, for example, is highly satisfying and it’s rich in omega-3 fatty acids. These fats benefit the heart and the brain. If your body craves fish and you withhold it because your diet tells you to, you may be doing more harm than good. 

Tuning into our natural system–as opposed to relying on outside diets–is so much easier! When we listen to our bodies, we have access to the full array of colors in the box of crayons–the picture becomes brighter, more vibrant, and we are not unnaturally limited by the negative effects of deprivation.

The Third Negative Effect of Dieting

Depressed man - harmful effects of dieting depression

The third negative effect of dieting is depression. 

According to Forbes magazine, “[A]n unhealthy diet—high in trans fats, sugar and processed and refined foods—increases risk for depression, especially in children and teens because it deprives the brain of the nutrients it needs, and breeds bad bacteria in the gut, which impacts our mental and physical health.” What we eat can affect our mood. 

It isn’t only “unhealthy” foods that can lead to depression. One of the harmful effects of dieting, in and of itself, is that we can begin to feel we are either doing too much or too little to promote health within our bodies. 

If you have ever thought, “I messed up my diet today,” or, “I failed because I ate too much,” or, “My day is ruined because I ate too little,” you understand the negative psychological ramifications of dieting. 

In reality, there is no such thing as “messing up” when it comes to nourishing your body. There is only “not listening.” 

Your body will tell you exactly what it needs and when. Dieting shouts at you from a book, a so-called dieting guru, or a vibrantly colored app that promises to make you skinny. 

In reality, we don’t need these outside sources to enlighten us on the positive and negative effects of dieting; our bodies enlighten us moment by moment. 

The Fourth Negative Effect of Dieting

If you are already experiencing excessive food cravings and even find it’s hard to control yourself in front of food, it’s because the dieter’s physical patterns and thought patterns have made that your norm. By always suppressing your needs, you pile up the sense of deprivation that can backfire. “Since today is Cheat Day, I’ll indulge so that tomorrow I’ll behave.” You aren’t eating food, you are eating emotions.

The suppression multiplies the negative emotions you already have a problem releasing. You eat your emotions more and oftentimes feel out of control because it has become your default way of coping. And if you are regularly breaking the ‘rules’ and binge eat to compensate for the sense of deprivation, you need to be careful of eating disorders.

The truth is there’s really no rules to begin with. Your mind only adopted those ‘rules’ since you entered the wrong door and joined the dieters’ party. It means you’ve learned about food and eating from a filtered lens. It’s all distorted in a systematic way to begin with. And all the food and eating struggles are just a part of that distortion.

The Fifth Negative Effect of Dieting

Family dinner

Given the four long-run negative effects mentioned above, you are guaranteed to be on a pathway towards everything you don’t want to become as long as you diet. A dieter’s life is 100% different from a lean, healthy, free, and confident person’s life — in almost every front. One lives a life where food fears dictate and shut down almost everything. The other lifestyle doesn’t think about food and enjoys it for the flavors, fun, health, stamina, and the inspirational moments that come with those dinner meetings and gatherings.

Now it’s your call — do you want to keep dieting, or not? 

Our founder, Leslie Chen, lost 50 pounds without trying. Her method was simple, and it’s the same method she coaches high-achieving professionals and highly motivated people through every single day. 

Real weight loss is not a product of dieting; it’s a product of reigniting a right relationship with your body and taking its cues, as opposed to imposing your misunderstandings of what you need to thrive and enjoy a healthy life.

You can live healthy and FREE!

Book a 1:1 Clarity Call Here.

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