Though many different types of eating disorders exist, few have as high a profile as anorexia nervosa. This is condition is the one that most commonly comes to mind when people think of eating disorders. It is often characterized by a gaunt appearance, an aversion to eating, and extremely low body weight; however, these symptoms are not always immediately recognizable or even discernable. Once the illness has been diagnosed by a medical professional, though, the next step is for the patient to work back up to a healthy body weight, ideally in consultation with their doctor.
For those looking to combat the malnourishment that so often accompanies anorexia, weight gain shakes can offer a convenient, reliable way to take in the calories, protein and nutrients needed to increase body mass in a healthy, controlled way. ENU Nutrition’s meal replacement shakes offer balanced, natural ingredients designed to be gentle on the body while still providing the fuel you need to stay active. Visit ENU online today to learn more about all our products.
Non-GMO Carbs Help Keep Your Body Fueled
Carbohydrates get a bad rap, especially among dieters, but the simple fact is that carbs are an essential building block in a healthy diet. Carbs are your body’s main fuel and an especially important source of energy for your brain. Without a consistent source of carbohydrates, your body consumes other types of body tissue, namely fats; if you have no excess fat, then muscles are broken down instead.
This process can affect more than just your biceps. All types of muscle tissue – including your heart – can be damaged, leading to a whole host of health complications, including low blood pressure or the development of an arrhythmia. In fact, around half the deaths associated with anorexia nervosa are the result of cardiac-related issues. However, the damage to the heart can usually be reversed with a change in diet, and maintaining a healthy intake of carbs and calories can even prevent the damage from happening in the first place.
Still, not all sources of carbs are equal in quality. Simple or refined carbs, like those found in processed foods and sugary drinks, are generally considered less beneficial for your body, while whole or complex carbs, like those found in whole grains and other naturally occurring foods, are better for you. ENU nutrition shakes use brown rice, tapioca, and quinoa – all sources of healthy, complex carbohydrates – to provide energy in the healthiest way possible.
Protein Maintains Muscles and Helps the Healing Process
Along with carbs and fats, protein is one of three macronutrients your body needs to function properly. Unfortunately, people suffering from anorexia nervosa are often malnourished, which means they likely have too little protein in their diet. Protein is a crucial building block in many of your body’s processes. It breaks down into amino acids in your system, a critical step in the creation and repair of the body’s cells; without it, healing can be delayed or cease entirely. Protein is also an important component in enzymes, hormones and various other chemicals that keep your body and brain in balance.
Failure to take in an adequate amount of protein can impact almost every system in your body. Not only is your body’s ability to repair itself severely impaired – a dangerous enough prospect on its own – but your immune system, digestive tract, and mood can all be inhibited by the lack of a crucial resource. ENU nutrition shakes contain 20 grams of protein from whey protein isolate, one of the most easily digestible sources of protein out there, to help you meet your nutritional requirements without taxing your system.
Healthy Fats Can Help Replenish Body
One of the most visible, and most fundamental, issues caused by anorexia nervosa is that it can completely deplete the body’s store of fat tissues. Although having a low body fat percentage can seem desirable, or even healthy, the truth of the matter is that having too little body fat can lead to a host of health problems. Some types of fats, known as essential fats, help to conserve body heat, protect your internal organs from injury, regulate important bodily processes, and ensure that you have an energy reserve to sustain you between meals. It also allows the body to absorb key fat-soluble vitamins and plays an important part in women’s reproductive processes.
The American Council on Exercise provides guidelines for healthy amounts of body fat: women should have, at minimum, 10 to 12 percent body fat, though the average woman has between 25 and 31 percent, which is generally considered healthy. For men, the numbers are lower: a minimum of 2 to 4 percent, with a healthy range of 18 to 25 percent. However, not all sources of fat are created equal.
The healthiest sources of fat are derived from nuts, seeds, vegetables, and fish, and are divided into two categories, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated. Monounsaturated fats are the distinguishing component of the famed “Mediterranean diet,” a healthful, high-fat diet believed to promote a healthy heart. Polyunsaturated fats are an example of an essential fat, which means it is required for key bodily processes – blood clotting and inflammation, to name two examples. ENU meal replacement shakes offer two sources of healthy fats, sunflower oil – a good source of monounsaturated fats – and coconut oil, which provides your body with fatty acids, an excellent source of quick energy.
Improve Your Diet and Gain Weight the Healthy Way
Those struggling with anorexia nervosa face a unique dilemma: whether to gain weight for the sake of their own health in a society that seems to value thin physiques, or whether to sacrifice themselves on the altar of Western vanity. At ENU, we don’t think this is any choice at all. Your health is important to us, but we also understand the desire to look and feel your best. For this reason, our nutrition shakes offer many of the vitamins and nutrients your body needs through natural ingredients so you can support your body without jeopardizing your well-being. To find about more about how ENU products can help you, visit us online today.