Losing weight, especially a large amount, can seem like the answer to many of life’s problems. If you’ve been struggling with weight for a long time, you’ll likely feel a mixture of emotions when you achieve your goals. Many of these will be positive—increased confidence, better health, less chronic pain—but you may also find unintended consequences that you didn’t expect before you began your weight loss journey. Find out how the physical and emotional changes that accompany significant weight loss can affect you and others around you.
You may experience unexpected changes in your everyday life. Sleep sometimes comes less easily after weight loss since dietary changes affect hormonal balances which can in turn affect the quality of your sleep. These shifts can reduce levels of tryptophan and melatonin in your brain, making it harder to fall asleep at night. Herbal sleep supplements may be able to help until your body fully adjusts. Check with your doctor for additional suggestions specific to your situation.
Although weight loss can make you look and feel better, you may not be prepared for the psychological changes that come with it. If you’ve pinned all your hopes for an improved outlook and a better life on reaching your weight loss goals, you may end up disappointed. If you’re experiencing chronic anxiety or depression, consider talking to a counselor or therapist. They can help you uncover the root of your mental health challenges so that you can reach a healthier mindset.
Losing a large amount of weight, especially in a short amount of time, can cause sagging skin. Damaged elastin fibers and collagen make it harder for skin stretched out from years of weight gain to bounce back. Weight loss surgery can even impact collagen production, compounding the difficulty. While unsightly hanging skin will eventually go away in most cases, in the short term, it can be disheartening, especially after you’ve worked so hard.
One of the most common places to see sagging skin is in the breasts. Because the breasts hold a lot of fat, they’re often one of the first places women lose weight. Breast augmentation can help women regain a youthful, full look. Significantly stretched skin can benefit from a combination of breast augmentation and breast lift. You can talk to a plastic surgeon, like Dakota Plastic Surgery: Sanjay Mukerji, MD, about your options for getting rid of sagging skin.
You may have assumed that your romantic and social relationships would instantly improve after losing weight. This is often especially true for those who have experienced issues in their love lifes related to a lack of confidence or physical barriers, you might have thought that significant weight loss would instantly fix these problems. However, it may take a little time and work to adapt to the change. If your partner is still overweight or living a less healthy lifestyle, they may need time to adjust to the changes you have made. Couples counseling can help with these issues.
You may find it more difficult to get or stay warm since your body tries to conserve energy as you lose weight. That means it has fewer calories to spare for the purpose of keeping you warm. And, of course, without extra fat to insulate you, you’ll struggle further to avoid being cold. Dress in layers so you’re prepared to deal with cooler temperatures while socializing, eating out, watching a movie in a theater, or working in an office.
While most effects from weight loss are positive, you may need to address a variety of issues—some minor, others more important. Regardless of how much weight you had to lose, the adjustments you make will be well worth the downsides. From adjusting your self-image to adjusting to physical changes, you have many options available to you for emotional and physical healing.