Many people lose weight and think it will solve all their gripes with their appearance, without knowing the side effects that come with extreme dieting. While “before” and “after” pictures can be compelling in their ability to motivate our weight loss, they don’t always tell the whole story. Those who’ve lost a lot of weight in a short space of time will have struggles to deal with long after they shed the pounds, and their health can still be affected. Here are four post-weight loss struggles you’ll identify with if you’ve lost weight, and some suggested solutions.
Many people experience stomach problems when they cut down on fat in their diets, causing gallstones, stomach pains and other digestion issues. If you’re still trying to lose weight, your best chance of avoiding stomach-related issues is to keep fat in your diet and keep your portions in check.
Although most people cut certain foods when they’re trying to slim down, as long as you make mostly healthy choices like whole grains, fruits and vegetables and eat small and often, you shouldn’t have to deal with unpleasant changes to your digestive system once the weight comes off. Fat often gets hailed as a food to avoid when you’re trying to lose weight, but there is evidence to suggest that healthy fat actually aids weight loss.
Dealing with leftover skin is one of the most prominent side effects of weight loss, but it’s something that isn’t often talked. In fact, some people find that excess skin makes them feel even less confident about their bodies after losing weight, not to mention the related health issues it can bring, such as infections and sores.
Luckily, it is possible to get rid of this excess skin through cosmetic surgery – the most common reconstructive procedure being the tummy tuck. “If loose, leftover skin after weight loss is causing problems in your life, the good news is that modern procedures can make a long lasting and successful difference’ commented cosmetic surgeon Elena Prousskaia. ‘With many individuals who have successfully faced huge weight loss challenges, it can be difficult to have achieved a desired weight only to find your thinner body is not the way you remembered it. This is where plastic surgery can make a tremendous difference.’
Losing a dramatic amount of weight can affect your relationships with others as well as your relationship with yourself. Perhaps you feel that your partner or friends should be on board with your weight loss journey, but they’re not as encouraging as you’d like them to be.
To avoid conflict in your personal life, explain your reasons for losing weight (such as health concerns or simply wanting to drop a dress size) and try to make your loved ones feel included. Weight can be a tricky subject, so some people may feel resentful, jealous or guilty for not losing weight themselves.
You expected to feel great about yourself after reaching your goal, but now you realise that weight loss is not a magic solution for low self-esteem. Perhaps you’re fed up of depriving yourself of the food you love, or maybe you’re starting to obsess over calories. It’s easy to step over the line from healthy weight loss to an unhealthy obsession, so if you start thinking about food and exercise all the time, then consider seeing your doctor for help.