There are at least six reasons why you continue to eat, even when you realize that you have to stop.
You Want To Eat Your Stress
We drown out our problems, instead of really living them. This is how food addiction appears. Complement it with the favorite female feeling – guilt, when you think that you are unworthy of love and, therefore, of a beautiful slim body.
Everyone sins with this at times, yet it is important to catch yourself on this stupid thought and not let this attitude take root. Otherwise, it has all chances to become your subconscious life program.
To find out if food is your coping strategy, make mental journeys into the past. You can do it with a psychoanalyst, who will be your guide, or you can do it yourself, if you are ready for it. Try to recall on the circumstances of life, which could contribute to the emergence of food addiction.
When did you start getting fat, and when you started being worried about your figure? What preceded this? How often and what you use now in your fridge to console yourself? And the main thing: while you are worried for your excess weight, what other problems that require decision-taking you place at the end of the list?
The second step is to learn distinguishing genuine, physiological hunger from psychological, that is the desire to relax, switch, distract yourself. One way is to try and eat by a schedule at least for a week, having a four-hour break between meals.
If you feel you want to chew something, deceive yourself – drink a glass of water, and then ask yourself the question: “Am I really hungry or just want to please myself?”
You Are Protected By Your Sides And Stomach
The reason for our failures in weight reduction is often a subconscious fear of a real, adult life with its dangers and risks. Excess weight is a psychological defense, an armor. You are unconsciously striving to become inedible for the world, hoping thus to avoid suffering.
Overweight is a psychological defense against any changes, especially if a person is not ready for them inside.
A new, more slender body is a new you! And what if you will have to change not only your wardrobe, but also your man, your way of life, and work – to re-build relationships with people who are accustomed to seeing you in XL format.
And this is a big deal. It’s no surprise that changes are frightening for many people, and the extra pounds bring a secondary benefit in this case. This self-deception does not prevent a woman from feeling down about her figure and from dieting. The results, if any, will be short-lived.
In this case, an honest conversation with yourself will help:
- What am I really afraid of?
- What is most important thing in life for me?
- What do I most dream about?
- What do I want?
- What would I change first, if everything were possible?
You Obey To Your Mother
Many of us in the childhood were forced to eat up to the last crumb. Some of us, being obedient girls, are still choking with pieces that are no longer fitting into their stomachs, because throwing away food is not good.
If the majority of relatives in the family have excess weight, then weight loss is sort of a symbolic betrayal, rejection of roots and traditions.
This psychological phenomenon is called “loyalty to ancestors”.
This loyalty can be so strong that we forbid ourselves to be different. Because food is love. Relatives loved us very much and were feeding us hard for this reason. Refusal to eat or radical change in eating habits is subconsciously associated with fear of losing love.
“Losing weight means breaking ties with those who loved us the way we are, and to whom we say by our attempts to lose weight, that they were mistaken in loving us, because we do not love ourselves like that” – such a logical chain is built up by a French psychiatrist and Specialist on eating disorders Gerard Apfel’dorfer, the author of “Losing weight is in your head”.
The author advises to:
- learn listening carefully to yourself,
- recognize your food rhythms,
- measure how much food your body actually needs.
For example, you can start serving portions that are smaller than usually for a week, or eat more often than you used to, and record your sensations in between meals. Most importantly is to tell yourself that you eat (and lose weight with it) not for someone or something, but for yourself, and you make a conscious, adult choice.
The Gene Of Obesity
You can address to geneticists, who will study your genotype and, based on the data obtained, will provide you with the most detailed recommendations on nutrition and lifestyle. They will help you find out:
- why you fail to lose weight,
- how intensively you burn calories,
- how your lipid metabolism works,
- what level of hormones are responsible for hunger and satiety (these processes occur individually in each person, depending on the set of genes)
- what kind of diet, products and sport are best for you.
Genetic tests in excess weight are now performed in many independent laboratories. Of course, you will need to not just pass the tests, but also find a competent endocrinologist and nutritionist, who deciphers them for you and helps you develop a further program of action.
In some families, children are not fed up till they burst, and instead are being frightened with excess weight since the moment they begin to understand anything. In this case, kilograms can be a riot against the parent, who imposes the standards of harmony.
“Mom imposed a certain image on you, you want freedom, and your body reacts to compulsion by weight gain, undermining your self-confidence. And your brain sends signals that it is necessary to strengthen fat stores to protect your body in such a shaky situation,” writes psychiatrist and nutritionist, author of the book “Weight and the Self”, Bernard Waysfeld.
If you are a secretive person by nature, and are accustomed to suppress feelings and emotions, then your body can start expressing itself for you.
“Losing weight is an act of self-assertion, but for this you need to learn to explain to others what you are doing and the difficulties that you face in a mature civilized way, rather than quietly eating up your sufferings,” says Gerard Apfeldorfer.
It’s also very important not to forbid yourself anything – otherwise you will rebel. Diet, especially a strict one, is always a stress. As soon as it ends, you reward yourself with delicious cakes for the deprivations you had to endure.
“Stop demonizing certain products,” says psychologist Michelle Freud, author of “To slim down and to reconcile with yourself.” “The more you forbid yourself, the stronger the inner tension and the risk of losing control sooner or later.” Allow yourself to eat everything – just a little bit.
Half of a cinnamon roll and the whole cinnamon roll taste the same. You get the sharpest gastronomic sensation with the very first bite. Then you are simply chewing, senseless, out of habit. Or, you can proceed like many French women do:
- follow a diet during the working days,
- eat whatever they want in weekend (stomach shrinks, and you won’t be able to stuff in too much either way.
You Do Not Have Enough Joy
Food – especially sweet – is happiness. Only because the society declared the dessert a happiness, and we believed it. We also learned that happiness is love, sex, and shopping. When we do this, our body produces endorphins.
If you don’t have enough positive emotions, you get into endorphin hunger. Psychologists also call it sensory deprivation – a lack of sensory sensations. This is typical of many modern people, who have so many things to do that they do not have time to enjoy each of them.
This includes food. That’s why we try to have as many dishes as possible in five minutes, just to enhance the sensations. Try to do nice things slowly – for example, do not try to dine on one Saturday night at a party in three different places. And expand your list of things that make you happy.
You have the right to be original – admit to yourself that you like to comb the dog, paint your nails, go to Thai massage, read Scandinavian detectives, buy vinyl records, play “Scrabble”, drive by car to some beautiful faraway city. You do like food, as well, among other things.
Dietitians, by the way, advise eating with closed eyes, listening to your taste sensations. “Turn every meal into a tasting,” says the French psychotherapist Jean-Philippe Zermati. “The more we try to feel the flavors and aroma of food, the sooner the saturation comes.”