A poor diet can make the body deficient of necessary nutrients or not provide the proper proportions and kinds or nutrients. As well as nutrition, maintaining a health weight is also important. A great way to do that is by using a smart scale which can help you monitor your weight and provide other important data. The typical American diet is too caloric and deficient in fruits and vegetables. Additionally, some meals are associated with a greater risk of medical complications than others. Knowing the signs of an unhealthy diet will help prevent greater health risks in the future. Here are 5 signs of harmful diets.
1. Menstrual problems
The menstrual cycle refers to the sequence of events that occur within a woman’s body every month as her body prepares for a potential conception. A menstrual cycle begins on the first day of the period and will usually last up to 35 days. Generally, a normal cycle lasts 21 to 35 days. It may be painful and heavy, but it may also be painless and light, depending on the woman’s body.
However, changes in a woman’s menstrual cycle may occur because of her diet. A high-fiber diet or a too low-fat diet may affect the menstrual cycle.
While a high-fiber diet reduces the risks of cardiovascular disease, stroke, diabetes, colon cancer, and breast cancer, it may disturb the normal menstrual cycle. In a study, a high-fiber diet is related to lowering circulating estrogen concentration and an increased likelihood of anovulation, which causes irregular menstrual flow and even infertility if left untreated.
2. Memory problems
Memory problems usually occur in people of advanced age. A study conducted by two laboratories at MUSC and Arizona State University discovered that mice fed a high-cholesterol, high-saturated-fat diet had impaired working memory. This memory loss relates to brain inflammation and a deficiency of structural proteins that alter how a nerve cell behaves.
The study concluded that the same process occurs in humans as well. It shows that by limiting cholesterol and saturated fat consumption, humans’ memory and brain functioning may be preserved as they age.
3. Leg cramps
A leg cramp is an episode of sharp discomfort produced by the involuntary tightening of the leg muscles. Usually, leg cramps are common during pregnancy, exercise, and with certain medications. However, leg cramps may also be experienced due to a harmful diet.
A very low-carbohydrate diet without vitamin supplements may cause leg cramping. When carbohydrate intake is drastically reduced, the body will lose a lot of water. In fact, most of the weight loss at the start of a diet is due to water loss. If fluids are not replaced, dehydration, the major cause of muscular cramping, may happen.
Fluid loss and carbohydrate restriction may result in electrolyte mineral losses, including magnesium, potassium, calcium, and salt. These minerals together play a critical role in muscular function, and a deficiency in one or more of them might also result in leg cramping.
4. Loss of interest in eating
Dietary problems may also manifest as a loss of interest in eating or an eating disorder such as anorexia. Anorexia is a condition in which a diet program develops into an eating disorder and has a negative impact on one’s mental health. People suffering from this disorder become concerned with maintaining a thin physique, and as a result, they adhere to a rigorous diet. If left untreated, this illness may be fatal, so it is critical to follow through on a weight loss program to prevent circumstances like this.
Constipation is most often caused by a lack of fiber in the diet. People who don’t eat a lot of fiber are more likely to be constipated.
Also, a deficiency of fluids in one’s diet may cause constipation. Individuals who do not consume enough water to maintain a soft stool are prone to experiencing constipation. A diet deficient in fiber or water will lead to bowel motions that are more difficult or irregular to expel. Minimizing intake of certain foods, particularly those heavy in carbohydrates, such as white rice, pasta, or white bread, may reduce the risk of experiencing constipation.
The human body is programmed to respond negatively to harmful behaviors, including poor nutrition. The key to a healthy diet is to consume the appropriate quantity and quality of food for your body’s nutritional requirements and to constantly listen to your body. Now that we’ve identified issues related to harmful diets, check out what you can do to improve your health in our 5 Tips for Maintaining a Healthy Weight article.
- Gaskins, A. J., Mumford, S. L., Zhang, C., Wactawski-Wende, J., Hovey, K. M., Whitcomb, B. W., Howards, P. P., Perkins, N. J., Yeung, E., & Schisterman, E. F. (2009). Effect of daily fiber intake on reproductive function: the BioCycle Study. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 90(4), 1061–1069. https://doi.org/10.3945/ajcn.2009.27990
- Leal-Galicia, P., Sánchez-Torres, M. C., & Meraz-Ríos, M. A. (2019). Cholesterol or Fat Rich Diets Accelerate Natural Age-Decline on Adult Hippocampal Neurogenesis and Have an Impact in Memory and Like-Anxiety Behavior. Advances in Bioscience and Biotechnology, 10(10), 331–345. https://doi.org/10.4236/abb.2019.1010026