Can’t Stop Eating? Maybe it’s Depression
Many people struggle with losing weight. Maybe you do, too. You might be determined to drop 10 pounds, but every time you try, the allure of comfort foods like mashed potatoes or macaroni and cheese wins out. What is it that makes it so hard to stay away from that kind of food? Have you considered that maybe you are depressed, and that emotional eating could be to blame?
Depression is often a result of having a low self-esteem. When you don’t feel good about yourself, you begin to give in more easily to things that are comforting, even though they aren’t good for you, such as drinking, drugs, or in this case, fattening food.
Emotional eating is often a kneejerk reaction to stressful situations triggered by anxiety or depression. If you find your succumbing to what is sometimes referred to as eating anxiety, chances are that you find yourself eating even when you are not hungry.
Check your mood then next time you dive into something ooey, gooey and delicious. Are you happy? Are you sad? Are you even hungry? Depression could be the trigger that is lurking in those food cupboards, luring you in.
After you indulge yourself, the negative emotions that drove you to eat return, often making you feel worse, which drives to over-eating again. As this emotional wheel turns, the pounds begin to stick. If you continue to feel bad about yourself, you can easily defeat your weight loss efforts by eating even more. This can eventually lead to obesity and the health problems that come with it.
Instead of embarking on yet another doomed weight-loss effort, consider another approach. Work on improving your self-esteem. When you boost your self-esteem, you feel better about yourself, and the depression that is constantly sending you to the kitchen may fade. In turn, a better self-esteem may help you strengthen your resolve to lose some weight, and you may find it easier to stay out of the refrigerator, especially when you aren’t even hungry.
Start with trying to peel away the layers of negative feelings you have about yourself, just the ones you have because you are overweight. You are probably judging yourself more harshly than others ever would. Try to get at the heart of what is causing your depression. When you do eat, make a mental note of how are feeling. Those feelings are probably the triggers that send you searching for those comfort foods. Once you can identify them, then you can work to diffuse them.
Self-Esteem and the Scale
Don’t let depression lead to bad eating habits that lead to weight gain. Try to identify when you are using food as a coping mechanism to pick you up when you’re feeling down. When you are depressed, food can be soothing, but usually not for long. When you are having trouble controlling your food intake, evaluate the situation. Concentrate on improving your self-esteem and you may just start seeing the numbers on the scale start going in the right direction.