National Eating Disorders Association

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Somehow Lost An Important Physiological Function

I have to say the least, a very unique situation. At some point along the line in my life, I've lost the ability to normally perceive hunger. Or maybe I've never had it to begin with, I cannot decide. A little bit of context may indicate some kind of answer to this: I have a physical disability known as Spina Bifida, of which spinal cord damages it has caused has lost some nerve functioning in the course of many incidents over the years. I've yet to act on this suspicion, if I even need to. I know fully well that this isn't normal, yet I don't see this to be a problem.

Sure, I don't eat many snacks, and if left unattended I am at high risk of accidentally missing a meal(or two). However, it isn't like I don't feel the side effects of hunger;Usually when I am "hungry" and food is presented in front of me, I can gauge my hunger level by level of interest in food. Also, if I go without food long enough, I start to feel weak/faint and low energy. But, these are quite inconvenient and unconventional measures for hunger, and I am having second thoughts about them

So what do you all think? Is this as bad as part of me thinks it is? Any other thoughts?

Lack of hunger

Here's how I see things like this. If they are getting in the way of your daily life, or are causing you to not function as well as you could, then that qualifies things as "a problem".

When I was a very small child, I just didn't eat. I didn't enjoy eating, and it seemed like a nuisance to me. My mom took me to the doctor, but I was healthy, so he told her not to worry. This went on for me well into adulthood, and I remained painfully thin. I was still quite active though, so it never seemed like a big deal. However there were repeated times when I would go out in my canoe for fishing, and I'd stay out for a pretty long time, and I'd notice how weak and addle-headed I would get.

Golly, maybe it would help if I packed a lunch ? So I tried that and what do you know - I was much more able to keep my wits about the end of the day. When I was doing extended physical activities , it turned out to be the same thing. If I'd eat, I had more stamina and could do a lot better.

So yeah, there are practical things about eating that can make life better I think.

This is assuming that there's not some big psychological issue attached to eating of course, which is something that you didn't mention ?

No, It Is Physiologically-Based

You're reply is reassuring - I am not the only who has dealt with this issue.I would second all of what you have said about the effects - I tend to get weak and listless when I don't eat. I just have been spooked since people around me can talk about food they feel like eating, and I don't exhibit same level of interest that everyone I've met has in food.

I don't have any psychological problem with eating as far as I can tell. Food is just sustenance for me unless it is food I like. But even in the case of food I really love, I don't think about it unless it follows along with my daily 3-meals-a-day need, rarely is it out of strong personal desire. I never get "hunger pangs" or get even close to yearning for any food. I may suffer a lack of interest as time, but I am not perpetually/consistently adverse to food.

In conclusion, this seems to be more abnormal but not a problem - it doesn't necessarily "get in the way" of my day-to-day life. It is no longer a cause for concern. Thank you for your insights, they were helpful.