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The Meth Diet

Methamphetamine can lead to dramatic changes in physical appearance including extreme, unhealthy loss of body mass, muscle atrophy, fatigue, weakness, and premature aging.

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  • Muscle Degradation
  • Loss of Appetite
  • Unhealthy Skin
  • Weight Gain
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Users often lose a lot more than weight. Which of these Meth effects do you think is the worst?

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    Nasty body odor
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    Rotting and crumbling teeth
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    Erectile dysfunction
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    Oozing skin sores
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    Muscle spasms and facial tics

These common physical effects of chronic methamphetamine use are also accompanied by a host of other physical and psychological changes including psychosis, mental impairment, heart and liver damage, and lowered resistance to illness.

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Terms

  • In the context of methamphetamine, anorexia refers to a severely decreased appetite (not to be confused with anorexia nervosa, an eating disorder characterized by fear of weight gain). Meth users may not eat for days, putting their bodies into a dangerous state of starvation. 65 Pounds

  • Also known as “wasting syndrome,” cachexia is when the body wastes away from loss of weight, fat, and muscle mass caused by diseases like cancer or from chronic methamphetamine use. A healthy person's body can adjust to starvation by slowing down its use of nutrients, but in cachectic patients, the body does not make this adjustment. They may even be eating enough, but their bodies are unable to absorb the nutrients. Body by Meth

  • Severe wasting away of the body to just skin and bones. Methamphetamine users tend to go for a long time without eating, starving their bodies of nutrients. This gives Meth users a haunting, sunken-in look.

  • The deterioration of muscle tissue. Methamphetamine users often lose a lot of weight, and much of it can come from the damaging reduction of muscle mass and function. "It Eats Your Muscle"

  • The breaking down of muscle tissue. When muscle fibers break down, myoglobin gets released into the bloodstream. This myoglobin breaks down into potentially harmful compounds and can cause kidney failure as the body tries to filter it out. Meth can damage and weaken muscle tissue, leading to this condition.

© Meth Project Foundation, Inc., 2014. All rights reserved.