It’s a well-known misperception that “you can never be too rich or too thin.” Even though few would beg to differ on the “rich” part of that statement, it is very possible, even dangerously so, to be too thin.
While obesity is a hot-button topic in the news and in legislation these days, the issues of eating disorders and body image dissatisfaction have been pushed to the back burner. In our health-obsessed culture, where people equate “thin” with “healthy,” losing weight is almost always seen as a positive. Unfortunately, the positive reinforcement that comes along with losing weight, coupled with the airbrushed images of unrealistically thin, firm, and perky women in the media today, can cause some women’s (and men’s) fixation on losing weight to spiral out of control, resulting in excessive weight loss.
If you aren’t sure if your healthy-living behaviors, like dieting and exercising, have caused you to be unhealthily thin, ask yourself these next few questions to see if, perhaps, you’ve gotten too thin.
“Have the compliments stopped?”
When you first started losing weight, people probably commented on how much healthier and more energetic you looked. For the most part, we all love to see our friends succeed, so you probably got a lot of compliments. However, if people have stopped complimenting you, even though you’re still losing weight, you may have hit a point where your weight loss looks unhealthy. Ask a trusted friend for his or her honest opinion; it’s possible that he or she has noticed but was afraid to insult you by showing concern.
“What is my body mass index (BMI)?”
The BMI scale, which measures your weight to height ratio, is notoriously unreliable; it can be inaccurate for athletes, whose higher body mass may make the scale measure them as obese, and many online BMI calculators don’t even take gender or age into account. However, for a quick method of assessing whether or not you are at a healthy weight, this tool can be very useful. This scale will tell you whether you are underweight, normal, overweight, or obese.
“What does my doctor say?”
If you’re seriously concerned that you might be too thin, the best way to find out for sure is to go to a doctor, preferably one who knows you and your medical history. He or she will be able to give you a trustworthy answer about your health and weight.
Above all, trust yourself. If you are seriously worried that you might have a problem, then there is a good chance that you might. Be honest with yourself and those around, and work on getting back to a happier, healthier you!