How Being too Skinny Damages your Health
As if the whole self-esteem, lack of respect and lack of physical attractiveness to the opposite sex wasn’t bad enough, being too skinny is bad for your health, too. As we discussed in the first article of this series, being a skinny guy in a fat world, you are a skinny guy living in a fat world so most of the media attention about weight related health issues is geared towards people who are overweight. In fact, most people assume that being skinny is healthy…well certainly it has to be healthier than being fat, right? Wrong! Being too skinny has just as many health risks as being too fat and unfortunately not enough media attention for the skinny guy to know about it.
You probably aren’t eating enough
Even though you would like to believe that you are too skinny exclusively because of genetics, the fact is that you probably aren’t eating enough which means your body isn’t getting enough nutrients to maintain proper cellular function. This coincides with a lowered immune system which opens the door for being susceptible to a myriad of viruses and other illness and taking longer to heal than most people.
Next on the list is the risk of osteoporosis which is a condition of thin, porous bones. As you age and muscle tone decreases, your bones will become particularly vulnerable to breaking because they are too thin and do not have adequate support from your muscles to protect them. It is important to increase your calcium, vitamin D and magnesium intake as well as increase weight bearing exercise in order to prevent and counteract osteoporosis and maintain strong, healthy bones throughout your life including in your old age. You don’t want to spend your final days in and out of the hospital, wearing casts and/or sitting in a wheel chair, do you?
In our previous post we discussed why women aren’t attracted to skinny guys, we established that it’s tough being a skinny guy in a fat world. Women don’t want to feel fat and being with a man who is skinnier than they are makes them feel as though they are fat even if they are at their ideal weight. A woman’s self confidence is a fragile thing. Women are constantly bombarded with images of what an ideal woman’s figure should be and 99 times out of 100 they just don’t match up to the airbrushed perfect images they see on TV and in magazines and this really bothers them.
A woman will spend a good deal of her time and money on things that will make her look better and feel better about herself.
She will buy and wear nipping and tucking undergarments no matter how uncomfortable they are. She will spend oodles and oodles on an anti aging cream, weight loss pills and the latest exercise DVD sensation. She’s not about to destroy all that hard work by standing next to a skinny guy who makes her look fat by comparison!
Beyond her own sense of self esteem, there are evolutionary reasons that a woman is attracted to muscular men.
It is actually programmed right into their genes to seek after a strong, muscular man. It has a lot less to do with her thinking the guy looks sexy than you might believe. You see, in the woman’s subconscious is the belief that a strong man will be a better provider for her and her future children. Back in the caveman days, a strong, muscular man would’ve been the best choice for hunting and providing a good source of food for the family.
It’s also played out in the movies all the time. A strong man is been best suited for defending the family from dangers. Of course, nowadays, a computer geek may be better able to provide financially for a woman, but her genes don’t know that! She can’t help being attracted to those bulging muscles and contoured physique…it’s in her nature! Aside from the subconscious belief that a muscular man will be a better provider and protector is the belief that he will also provide genetically superior offspring. Even though neither men nor women may be thinking in terms of marriage when they are looking for a date on Saturday night, deep down in their subconscious that is what they are thinking about.
Even if you are already married, this subconscious programming affects you.
Your wife may have been intelligent enough to make her decision about a life partner and his ability to provide for the family on conscious thought, but her subconscious programming still affects the way she views you. There are times you don’t feel as though she respects you as much as she should and that is because you aren’t “as much of a man” as you could be.
This also affects your sex life. Even though your wife was attracted toward your personality and character strengths when you got married, she isn’t always as sexually attracted to you as you would like. Having a strong muscular physique would send your wife’s hormones through the roof and you would be getting all the action you could handle… and then some!
Anemia is another common health problem in those who are underweight.
Its main cause is not eating a healthy balanced diet that is rich in iron (lean red meat, fortified cereals and green leafy vegetables are your best sources). Anemia is characterized by decreased blood cells and symptoms may include: shortness of breath, fatigue and chest pain. Please check with a doctor as soon as possible if you are experiencing any of these symptoms and be sure to include more of the foods listed above in your diet. The iron naturally occurring in food is more easily assimilated in the body than iron in a vitamin pill, so keep that in mind.
Other health risks associated with being underweight are varied.
Most hormones in your body, including sex hormones and those necessary for proper brain function, need fat to be properly transported throughout your system. Even though your main goal is adding lots of hard muscle to your body, chances are that your body fat is also very low and may need to be improved as well (don’t worry, you won’t be “getting fat”, the muscle will all that anyone notices). Bodybuilders love to sculpt down to a 4% body fat (which is about the bare minimum for survival), but they usually only do this for competition because having a little more fat on your body is actually much healthier. Also, you will have a difficult time adding muscle to your frame if you are starting out with a body fat percentage this low (more info in the next chapter). You should strive for a range of 6 to 17%, especially if you intend to increase your physical activity level.
In our next post we’ll talk about how being too skinny damages your health.
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