Using any type of weight-loss drug for a prolonged period could lead to a myriad of problems and issues. Abuse of supplements can create minor problems like irritability all the way up to severe problems resulting in death.
Even still, many people choose to ignore warning labels and use whatever they can to lose weight. And some individuals even go so far as to use laxatives in order to lose weight.
Laxatives and other products geared at softening stools, relieving constipation and cleansing the colon are good products for what they do, but they should not be overused and should never be used to help lose weight.
People taking laxatives to lose weight assume mistakenly that the digestive system is somehow going to process body fat and that evacuating substances from inside the body will cause weight loss. Others use laxatives in order to avoid gaining weight, assuming that whatever they eat will be immediately passed, almost like bulimia.
Not only do laxatives not work for losing weight, but they can be very dangerous to use in this fashion or to overuse in general. Here are 10 side effects of laxative usage.
10 Reasons to Avoid Misusing Laxatives
1: Weight Gain
Because some assume that all new foods will be immediately passed through via laxative use, they binge eat and end up gaining significantly more weight.
2: Poor Nutrition
Going along with the binge eating, people can up their cholesterol levels, blood pressure and blood sugar by using laxatives in this fashion; or, on the other end of the spectrum, they can lose too many vital nutrients the body needs.
The overuse of laxatives has been known to cause bloating (water retention) in people, which is both uncomfortable and very unflattering.
4: Excessive Cramping
Using laxatives in this fashion can cause excessive cramping of the intestines, a very, very painful phenomenon.
5: Bacteria Loss
Your digestive tract contains crucial bacteria which help to break down and pass food. Excessive use of laxatives causes you to lose these bacteria and will make it harder to break down and pass food.
6: Chemical Imbalance
Misuse of laxatives can cause the body to lose too many electrolytes, resulting in imbalance.
7: Cardiac Arrhythmia
Cardiac arrhythmia, or irregular heartbeat/palpitations, can occur from using too many laxative products.
8: Heart Attack
In some cases, individuals overusing laxatives have experienced heart attack.
Lack of vital nutrients in the body can cause a general “low” feeling – low energy, fatigue and a disruption of sleep patterns.
10: Renal Complications
In some cases, the overuse of laxatives can cause kidney complications including kidney failure.
Not only are these ten side effects very scary and things you would want to avoid at all costs, but there have been cases of laxative abusers suffering from instant and inexplicable death. It is rare but it is not out of the question.
Proper dieting takes a careful balance of nutrition and exercise. It also takes a commitment on your part to do what is necessary to change your lifestyle and lose the pounds. This does not include attempting to cheat the process by taking dangerous pills; much less substances that were not even meant to help you lose weight in the first place.
Taking laxatives to lose weight is stupid and dangerous. In fact, a proper diet should be enough to exclude the need for laxatives altogether. Eating enough fiber and staying properly hydrated is all you need in order to stay regular. And if you do need an assist in that department, make sure you stop the laxative use immediately after you are relieved and never, ever use laxatives in an attempt to lose weight.