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Teen Dieting

Cons of cutting as a teenager

As a teenager, hormones are crucial in the development of the body. However, whenever a person cuts, these hormones crash because the body is not capable of having the sufficient amounts of energy for a growing teenage body. Cutting as a teen can lead to hormonal imbalances, physiological development issues, and psychological eating disorders because the body is requiring more energy and food; yet the ingestion of food through a caloric deficit is not sufficient no matter the macro scale. Lastly, the hormonal peak in a male body does not peak till 22 years old which means cutting can inhibit hormonal peaking, stunted growth, and much more.

what would be a beneficial route?

Unless a teenager is morbidly obese and under doctor supervision, only then is when a teenager should look into cutting. Cutting would be much slower—crash dieting, eating in a deficit more than 500 calories, will create mass amounts of negative side effects. Furthermore, slowing the metabolism would be created through cutting which further prolongs the side effects of cutting as a teen. The route most optimal is maintaining and being in a slight caloric deficit through cardio a few days a week. Here, the body is able to still recover, build muscle, and have higher hormonal levels but still not detrimental to the growth of a teenager. It is a much slower process but is the healthiest overall.

This is the main physical issues in boys and girls.

It is obviously especially bad in girls but because puberty ends sooner for them they are normally out of danger by the time they are 16.

From the National Library of Medicine: “Dieting is associated with potential negative physical health consequences. Nutritional deficiencies, particularly of iron and calcium, can also pose short- and long-term risks. In growing children and teenagers, even a marginal reduction in energy intake can be associated with growth deceleration (50–52). Disordered eating, even in the absence of substantial weight loss, has been found to be associated with menstrual irregularity, including secondary amenorrhea in several cross-sectional studies (53–56). The long-term risk of osteopenia and osteoporosis in dieting girls, even in the absence of amenorrhea, is of considerable concern as well (54,57). The medical complications of any purging behaviour, such as self-induced emesis, laxative use or diuretic use, are well-established, as are the risks associated with stimulant weight loss medications.”
The article also lists many many other downsides and highlights the under studied side of teen dieting: which is the mental side. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2720870/
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