Emotional Aspects of Obesity

- POSTED ON: Jan 24, 2013

Before my Weight Loss Surgery 20 years ago, I spent about 20 years in Therapy trying to resolve any emotional issues that might be causing my problems with food and weight. I gained lots of information about overeating behaviors, and insight into my own personal life. Therapy helped me learn to like and accept myself even though I was morbidly obese, but it didn’t take away my desire to be a normal weight. It also didn’t result in my becoming any thinner.

In my opinion, too much emphasis on the emotional aspects of overeating simply adds another narrative to “pathologizing” people with excess weight.

Most obese people are not gluttonous sloths without will power, nor are they emotionally-wounded wrecks. You can chose which of these you think is worse.

After a mentally-healthy-person becomes obese in this anti-fat biased culture, sometimes this will adversely affect all dimensions of their physical, emotional and functional health, which brings them close to a pathological state.

However, there are countless people with excess weight, who eat as much - or as little - as skinny folks. Throughout history, overweight and obese individuals have expressed incredible feats of determination and will power, and psychiatric wards are full of skinny people with mental illness.

If there even really IS an obesity epidemic…yes, I’ve read some excellent material disputing that fact … It is probably the natural response to living in an unnatural environment - or perhaps even the natural response to merely living with plenty of food at ready access.

For most people with excess weight, there is probably no real underlying “pathological” driver apart from being human
. After all, what do most naturally thin people do to stay thin? The correct answer is often, “not much” … especially when compared to the lifetime efforts put forth by most of the people who have a natural tendency toward fatness.

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Existing Comments:

On Jan 24, 2013 jethro wrote:
We are all affected by our environment. It's easy to say "do this don't do that" but not everyone has that Prussian discipline. For some people it's easy to "do this don't do that" just like for some people becoming an NFL player is "easy" while many others do not make the high school football team.

On Jan 24, 2013 jethro wrote:
We need to play with the cards we are dealt and make the best of it.

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