Tina- Thank you for the respectful reply and for further explaining your point of view.
It’s true that my experience won’t be relevant to everyone. For people who are suffering from chronic illness or fatigue because of some kind of malnourishment (perhaps because of an eating disorder), a heavy exercise program would probably be disastrous. These people might not have the muscle and physical reserves for any kind of physical work, and in that case, it makes sense to focus on eating more and getting some rest–and only to begin exercise gradually as they regain their strength.
But I think there are plenty of people with chronic fatigue that have the opposite problem. In my opinion, the obesity epidemic in the United States (and worldwide) is pretty convincing evidence that most people eat too much and exercise too little. For the average person, lack of exercise seems more likely to cause fatigue than lack of food.
Like so many people who frequent this site, I tried for years to fix my health problems through special diets, such as WAPF, paleo, low fat, low carb, gluten free, etc., etc., etc. For most of these years, my weight was in the normal range, and I thought of myself as reasonably fit despite my chronic fatigue. I couldn’t have imagined that my problem was a lack of exercise, because I looked fine and I had a reasonable level of strength.
Because of my years of orthorexia, I thought I was a perfect candidate for overfeeding, and when I tried it, I felt better for a little while, but I also ended up overweight, and I started to have new problems like high blood pressure and shortness of breath. I think there are others who have also had this sort of experience, and I want to make sure people hear this side of the story. For many people, overfeeding will just make their problems worse.
I’m glad my orthorexia is gone (and I appreciate this site for that reason). I don’t waste time googling about diet anymore, because I’m pretty sure there’s no perfect diet, and that restricting normal food isn’t going to make me healthier. And in way, getting fat from overfeeding was the impetus I needed to start exercising hard and get into really good shape, because I realized how out of shape I was. When I was thinner, I wrongly believed I was in good shape because I looked okay.
And now, I’m a helluva lot less likely to get eaten by that bear…