Laxative Addiction and Risks When They Are Being Abused For Weight Loss on Dr. Oz Episode
Dr. Oz dedicated the first half of today’s show to laxative addiction and the risks involved with the risky practice of abusing laxatives to lose weight. He talks about the dangers that you may be imposing to your intestines if you partake in this unhealthy practice and the treatment options available for laxative addiction. On the followup segment Dr. Oz talks about the risk of organ damage that can occur to your brain, heart, and colon by misusing laxatives.
Dr. Oz invited women on to the show who talked about their addiction to laxatives including a woman who lost nearly 200 pounds from taking laxatives. In fact, this woman went from 268 pounds all the way down to 78 pounds. The images of the woman at 78 pounds was shocking and exposed what laxatives can do to your body when abused. The woman was dangerously thin and obviously putting her health at risk. She explained to Dr. Oz that in the beginning she had no intention of abusing laxatives the way that she did but the whole addiction took hold and she took more and more to use more weight. She told Dr. Oz that she tried to cut back but when she did she was in pain and felt bloated (her “cutting back” means her current dose of 30-40 pills a day). Dr. Oz told the woman that the pain that she is feeling is because of the intestinal damage that the laxatives are doing to her.
Types Of Laxatives
Dr. Oz talked about the different types of laxatives and which ones can be damaging to your intestinal tract.
Fiber Supplements – These supplements contain fiber that is similar to the fiber found in fruits and veggies. They can be a healthy way to promote normal bowel movements by bulking up your stool.
Osmotic Laxatives – Draws water into the colon which moves along the bowel movement at a much faster rate.
Stool softeners – These kinds of laxatives are often used for patients who go through surgery and get constipated. Stool softeners, yep you guessed it, soften your stools so they can be passed without as much strain and pain.
Stimulant Laxatives – These are the most damaging to your intestines. They irritate your intestines which stimulate it’s desire to evacuate everything inside your intestines to get rid of the irritation.
Laxative Abuse and Addiction Causes Intestinal Damage
Dr. Oz explained to the woman who (cut back to 30-40 laxatives a day) what her addiction is doing to her body. She uses stimulant laxatives which are the most damaging to your body. He said that our bodies are supposed to absorb the nutrients we eat but when you are taking high doses of laxatives this natural process can’t happen because your body is trying to quickly expel everything that is in your intestines. You will lose weight this way, but you will be causing havoc to your insides and you won’t be getting any nutrition from the food you eat.
Treatment For Laxative Addiction
Dr. Oz said that those who abuse laxatives are not only damaging their own bodies, but they are also causing damage to their loved ones who. He invited a woman named Tennie McCarty from the Shades of Hope Treatment Center on to the show to share what you can do to treat laxative addiction and that there is help out there. Dr. Oz said that he was shocked to learn how prevalent laxative abuse is (especially amongst women) and this is what compelled him to do a show on this topic.
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