On Saturdays, I always go to Pilates, if possible, of course. Yesterday, a lady I haven’t seen for a while, approaches to me and starts to talk, explaining me why she has not come for the last month.
Her story begins by saying that she is too thin. It doesn’t seem to me, she is not fat, that’s true, but never before I’ve heard of someone complaining of being too thin, usually it’s the other way, people complain because they are too fat.
Then she starts telling me her problem. Because of her thinness, the bones pierce the skin and come out. Her coccyx has just healed and she suffered a tremendous pain. I am speechless, then the Pilates class kicks off and she stops talking.
I begin to reflect on my two extra pounds, on the fact that I wanted to have a session of cryolipolysis, and on the fact that I do not like my body a little “round”. Then I think about the lady, her problem, and I tell myself that I think I will keep my two extra pounds. I start then to do some research on the benefits of having a little extra fat, so to find a justification for keeping my two extra pounds (I have to find a good reason not to lose these two pounds, right?)
First of all, you need to know your BMI, Body Mass Index, and mine is okay, my weight is normal.
Once that I have established that I am not overweight, I go on with the search to look for possible damages that an excessive thinness may cause.
First of all, the adipose tissue plays important functions, including the production of hormonal substances, such as leptin (the satiety hormone), which has a role, among other things, in the regulation of energy balance and fertility. The reduction of adipose tissue below 20% in women can lead to menstrual irregularities, for example.
Let’s see now other risks associated to an excessive thinness:
- Early menopause. It has been found that being overweight may trigger an early menopause.
- Osteoporosis. Even the bones can be compromised. Above all, elderly people can experience the fragility of the bones. A certain percentage of fat mass, or even better muscle mass, can act as a protection to the bones.
- An insufficient dietary intake causes the body to trigger a “saving” situation with various consequences on the hormons such as the reduction of the growth hormone, or the increase in blood sugar because insulin is reduced.
- Muscle strength. Reduction of muscle strength, weakness, anemia.
- Infections. Underweight is also associated with an increase in infections due to the lowering of immune defenses.
Watch out! I’m not telling you that you have to fatten excessively to become obese, because then you would have other problems, like cardio vascular diseases. What I am saying is that you do not have to lose weight excessively.
Calculate your BMI and try to keep it over time by eating healthy and regularly, not forgetting that doing the right amount of exercise is just as important.
These are the best things you can do for yourself.