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Why am I losing weight on junk food?

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Old 02-22-2008, 01:01 PM   #1
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Default Why am I losing weight on junk food?

Okay, here is my 'dilemma':

I am 24 and 5'7". I started dieting in late December, right before Christmas. I ate like a pig, no holds barred, and lost three pounds. Thought that was weird. I dropped from 156 to 153. I gave up drinking 5-7 cans of Mountain Dew shortly after Christmas, and dropped to 148 soon after. I stalled there for the longest time on a caloric intake of 1200-1500 calories, depending. I have been to many calorie sites and they say I should consume no more than 1800 calories just to maintain my current weight. I lost about a pound more on that and dropped down to 147. Then... I stalled.

Weight fell off sooo slowly. As of recently, I have started eating like crazy again. I am now consuming 2400-3000 calories a day, and my weight has been dropping off like a log every day for the last two weeks. I am eating cakes, brownies, candy, everything but soda. What is going on here? It's working so well, but shouldn't this not be possible? I am sedentary with a desk job too!
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Old 02-22-2008, 01:55 PM   #2
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You're a freak of nature? (I kid, I kid) Honestly, I don't know what to tell you! I do know that eating with calories too low for too long can cause peoples metabolisms to slow way down to compensate... but that doesn't mean that eating way above your BMR would cause you to lose. Have you had yourself checked for Hyperthyroid? I'd check with your doctor, at any rate. Here's a list of hyperthyroid symptoms I grabbed off this website: http://www.endocrineweb.com/hyper1.html

"Common symptoms and signs of hyperthyroidism

Palpitations
Heat intolerance
Nervousness
Insomnia
Breathlessness
Increased bowel movements
Light or absent menstrual periods
Fatigue


Fast heart rate
Trembling hands
Weight loss
Muscle weakness
Warm moist skin
Hair loss
Staring gaze"
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Old 02-22-2008, 01:58 PM   #3
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Actually, I am always cold all the time (cold hands, cold everything), and I sit in front of a small heater at work all day because I am freezing. I got checked for being hypothyroid just a month or so ago, and my blood test came back normal. I am not hypo nor hyperthyroid, so I know that's not it. I would have thought the same thing!

Guess I'm just a freak?
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Old 02-22-2008, 02:01 PM   #4
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I'm curious about how your diet was before you decided to start dieting. If you were a junk food junkie before December (when you said you decided to start losing weight), were you losing, gaining or maintaining at that point?

Last edited by Azure : 02-22-2008 at 02:07 PM.
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Old 02-22-2008, 02:11 PM   #5
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I didn't watch what I ate before December. I ate whatever I ate - I didn't watch anything. I drank way too much soda, but I ate at fast food places everyday. I often snacked between meals, but yeah.. my typical day before December was this:

Morning:

2 cans of mountain dew, two sprinkled office donuts

Lunch:

1 pack of Lebron's Lemonade gum (ate the whole pack)

2 McDonald's Cheeseburgers

1 Chocolate Shake (medium)

1 Medium Fries

After I got back to the office I would consume 2 more Mountain Dews

Dinner:

Some Korean place for tofu, tea and rice.

1 Jello Cup

2 Mountain Dews while playing on the computer

Strawberries with whipped cream

The next day would be a repeat of the first day, but a variation on the fast food place or the snacks. The only thing staying the same was the soda intake, which I dropped cold turkey and haven't touched since. During this time I stayed at 156, never went above it. I was eating far more then than I do now, for sure. It still doesn't explain why I can eat this much and still lose weight after stalling and barely losing anything at what I should be eating, you know? I have eaten like I did back in early December since high school. I was 156 since my freshman year of college and have stayed there.

It doesn't make sense to me.
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Old 02-22-2008, 02:25 PM   #6
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Hrm... I think I'd talk to you doctor about finding a place to have your RMR checked. I think most big universities have some sort of machine they hook you up to, and it will tell you what your resting metabolic rate is. It sounds like, if you can maintain your weight (or lose weight) eating 2500-3000 calories a day, then you must be burning that many a day, which suggests a high RMR. If you dropped your calories VERY low in comparison to your RMR, it could have sent red flags up to your system to slow things down, which might explain why you didn't lose any weight on comparatively very low calories.

Some people are genetically pre-disposed to having a high RMR or have hyperthyroid (but you don't have that, since you've had your levels checked recently). If your tested RMR isn't abnormally high, then there has to be something else going on.

I'm not a doctor or a nutritionist, so I'm really just throwing my ideas out there. The end result is: talk with your doctor. I'll also note that even if you can get away with losing on 2500-3000 calories a day, that getting a lot of sugar/refined carbohydrate isn't great for anyone's health
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Old 02-22-2008, 02:30 PM   #7
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Oh, I haven't thought of that! Thanks, I should have that checked actually.

I feel like Don Gorske on Supersize Me, that thin guy who ate at least 2 Big Macs a day since 1972 (he used to eat 4), but besides being a bit pasty he's as thin as can be. I may not be as fast RMR-wise as him, but he always stood out as a freak of nature to me! =)
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Old 02-22-2008, 02:54 PM   #8
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Well, at 540 calories apiece, that's 2160 calories. Healthy adult men can easily burn 2000-3000 calories a day, depending. So if he ate little else during the day and didn't drink many caloric beverages, that's not a big deal.

I was making an assumption that you're female...are you male? Women tend to have slower metabolisms than our male counterparts.
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Old 02-22-2008, 03:03 PM   #9
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Haha, yes, I am female. =) Yeah, I suppose he can get away with it if he ate nothing else (or not much else).
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Old 02-26-2008, 06:16 AM   #10
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Something that I think is important to remember though, is that just because you stay thin eating junk, doesn't mean you are healthy.

Think people still have heart attacks, cancer, strokes, high blood pressure, and other health issues-many associated with a poor diet and lack of exercise.

I would seriously reconsider eating this way, even if you are losing weight.

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Old 02-27-2008, 08:59 PM   #11
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I would have more tests done Mizu Losing that much weight is dangerous especially for the heart.
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Old 02-28-2008, 07:20 PM   #12
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No, I believe that the original poster has lost about 13 pounds since around Christmas, which is a safe rate of weight loss.
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Old 02-29-2008, 02:09 PM   #13
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Exclamation I am not trying to scare you but......

I read all of the posts here. Since you have eliminated any thyroid problem via seeing a doctor, it doesn't mean that you are necessarily healthy either.

Without trying to scare you I would visit a doctor again and have some blood work done. There are two other possible reasons you might be losing so quickly on so many calories (since it has been ruled out that you don't have a thyroid problem): diabetes or cancer.

One symptom of Type II diabetes is losing weight without trying to diet.

One symptom of having cancer is also losing weight without trying to diet.

Again, I am not a doctor nor am I trying to scare you but if you are experiencing some metabolic issues (the coldness) you still could have some endocrinological issues that didn't show up on the original testing.

Return to your doctor and make him/her give you additional tests.

Be safe and be healthy.
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Old 03-12-2010, 09:36 AM   #14
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the 3 lbs before christmas doesn't seem too weird to me. TOM, water weight, something could have explained that.

the fact that you dropped drinking MT Dew is a big deal. if you really drank 5-8 cans a day you are looking at dropping 850 - 1360 calories right there. A DAY! that's 5950 - 9520 calories a WEEK.

If your body holds to the 3500 cals = 1 lb rule, you are looking at 1.7-2.72 lbs a week loss just from cutting out Mt. Dew.

In 2 months, you dropped 13 lbs and that makes sense with how much you eat. I think if you dropped your cals a bit to 2000 you'd lose faster, but I don't think you are doing anything too crazy. Maybe try eating a bit healthier for your arteries' sake

But I'm no doctor and I'm new at this too... and jealous!
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Old 03-22-2010, 08:12 AM   #15
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You're eating junk food yes, but you are still eating LESS than you were before, hence a caloric deficit (except for that short span of 12-1500). So, it does make sense for you to lose weight. I envy your ability to consume brownies with no reprecussions!!! If I LOOK at a brownie it will attach itself to my left thigh!!! LOL!
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