Editor’s Column: My Body

“Your brain is your biggest strength, not the body around it.” 

Throughout my life, I have learned to live by this saying. I know I can rely on my brain, something that I don’t trust with the body that houses it.  

Now if you look at me, you’d think I’m a normal healthy young man. And for the most part, I am, other than being a bit on the skinny side. 

My body has an issue that affects my endocrine system. This syndrome affects 1 in 30,000 males, and 1 in 125,000 females. This requires me to get an injection every two weeks to give my body what it needs and keep it in proper working order. 

This has led me to monitor a few different things within my body. The biggest is my weight. The endocrine system affects my metabolism. My metabolism consumes nutrients in the way that a 2003 Dodge Dakota burns through gas. It cooks. 

This has its benefits. I can eat whatever I want, whenever I want! There is no need for a diet, as I worry about my weight going in the opposite direction. 

My weight is always my biggest concern, I’ve had issues in the past with my body losing weight. During my freshman year here, the doctors took me off my medication to see if my body could create the things that it needed to create. My body didn’t, and after the six-month test, I had lost 15-20 pounds. That was 10-15% of my body weight. 

I couldn’t do any normal activities. Working out was a challenge during this time because my muscle mass had eroded due to my body not creating the thing. My stomach became a concern both physically and mentally. Physically my appetite disappeared, I felt like I was going to throw up when I put food in it, though I always felt hungry. Then I always felt like I had butterflies, something I always felt when I would have to deal with anxiety. 

Safe to say they got me back on that injection. 

I remember how bad I felt then. I never want to feel that way again. That leads me to today. One of my biggest fears is going back to that time.  

I know I MUST eat three times a day, or more. If I don’t, I lose weight. 

When I wasn’t busy, I would eat everything available to me. It didn’t matter, I didn’t gain anything weight-wise. The issue has arisen as I’ve gotten busy with my life. 

School, work, extracurricular activities all take up my time. Every day brings a new list of things that I either must do or that I want to do. I never feel like I have enough time to do anything. Now, that’s mostly on me. I get way too distracted by a multitude of different things. Well, when you feel like you won’t have a lot of time, you cut things to make up the deficit.  

Lunch is usually cut from the day if I feel I am too busy. I ask myself why I should spend 20 minutes to an hour out of the day eating lunch when I could be spending it doing something else? If I wake up too late sometimes breakfast is cut too. Can’t waste time when I need to be out the door. 

Where has this gotten me? Well, right now, I sit seven pounds lighter than I started the school year. Doesn’t sound like a lot until you realize that’s 4.6% of my body weight. I need to figure out how to get my body more nutrients, or I’m going to start feeling the way I did freshman year. I can’t go back to that. As much as I wish we could photosynthesize, we can’t.