Many people equate eating food with gaining weight. Ok, that is one of the primary reasons people gain weight, but it’s not the eating that is causing the excessive weight, it’s the choices of food and the quantities. To those people, not taking the calories in means they are losing weight; unfortunately, the body needs the nutrition from the food in order to properly function. Let’s look at what the body needs on a daily basis and the benefits and risks of starving yourself to lose weight. What the Body Needs
In order for the body to function properly it needs a variety of vitamins and minerals, along with fiber and other nutrients. Let’s look at the nutrients the various body parts need:
- The Body – The entire body has a variety of needs such as protein, iron, magnesium, sodium, calcium, potassium, vitamins, and zinc for muscle and cell function.
- Brain – The brain needs carbohydrates, fatty acids, iron, iodine, and assorted vitamins to be alert and retain memories.
- Bones – They are responsible for providing the structure of the body and producing red blood cells. Bones need sodium, calcium, iron, assorted vitamins, selenium, magnesium, and potassium.
- Liver – This is one of the largest and heaviest organs in the body and it produces bile to help digest food, and helps the body in absorbing and using other minerals and vitamins. It also needs fiber, magnesium, potassium, zinc, folate, iodine, and a variety of vitamins to function properly.
- Kidneys – These are used to filter out waste in the body and they are dependent on receiving a quantity of magnesium, potassium, thiamin, carbohydrates, and assorted vitamins.
- Colon – The colon absorbs water and salt from undigested food, as well as other nutrients to pass along to the body. In order to function properly, it needs calcium, carbohydrates, iron, fatty acids, magnesium, potassium, selenium, sodium, zinc, and assorted vitamins to ensure it is processing the undigested food properly.
- Nervous system – The lipids and fatty acids are needed for the nervous system to store energy, regulate hormones, provide insulation for temperature extremes, digestion, vision, and for every cell to communicate with other cells.
- Blood – The blood needs assorted minerals and vitamins to carry oxygen to vital parts of the body and move the carbon dioxide from the cells into the lungs to be expelled and replenished with fresh oxygen. The blood requires iron, calcium, and phosphorus in order to perform its duties in addition to assorted other minerals and vitamins.
- Muscles – The muscles need a fresh supply of carbohydrates, protein, and potassium in order to be flexible and help support the body. Remember, the heart is a muscle as well, and requires the same nutrients.
As shown above, each major component of the body requires specific quantities of the various minerals and vitamins in order to function, and depriving any of these organs and parts of the nutrients they need can cause dysfunction in the organ and leads to disease.A Revolving Door Cycle
When the body consumes food, it stores the nutrients in the food so that it’s available when the body needs it. This means that when food is consumed on a regular basis, the body is using what it needs and disposing of the superfluous. It also means that when the body it not getting what it needs, it tends to store more for those times when proper nutrition is unavailable. It is during these times that the metabolism slows down, and the body fails to dispose of the superfluous fats and sugars in order to have the supply it needs to support the bodily functions.Eating enough to keep the metabolism steady is always the best idea (meaning several smaller meals a day) while starving the body slows the metabolism and the process of eliminating the extra nutrients and materials.Starving the Body
Starving the body to lose weight tends to set the person off in a yoyo pattern because as soon as consuming the food begins again, the weight just adds up. However, for a very short term (one or two days), providing appropriate vitamins and minerals are taken to ensure the body doesn’t begin to malfunction, starving the body to lose those extra five or six pounds can be a good way to eliminate those few extra pounds.In order to lose weight effectively – and the goal to keep the weight off – it’s better in the long term to manage the intake of calories and get exercise. In order to achieve the most impact:
- Eat a healthy diet
- Make the portions balanced
- Refrain from overeating
- Get some exercise
The best recommendation is to not deprive the body of needed nutrients, minerals, and vitamins in order to stay healthy.