Dr. Jacqueline B. Sallade offers advice for maintaining your mental health.
To all of you out there who are overweight, please don't be offended by the following diatribe. I'm not judging you. There but for the grace of God or fate or luck go I. I care enough, though, to offer up some tough love facts and ideas.
Now, admittedly, everyone who knows me realizes that battling overweight is a passion of mine. You've read my stuff before. I did my doctoral dissertation a century ago on overweight children because they served as a good example of rejected children, not so much the case today, as they are ten times more prevalent. I haven't experienced signigicant problems in this area myself because any time I gained weight, I caught it and undid it quickly and after the second time never let it happen again. When I was too skinny, I figured that out, too, and made the choice to gain weight sensiby, including working out for good muscles.
I've run into so many people with so many excuses/reasons for their overweight status. I have to say that endocrine conditions can be treated medically, and you will have more trouble managing weight but it's done well by lots of people with the same problems all the time. Medications often slow down metabolism and weight gain ensues, but, again, it's harder but possible to lose weight. Those cases are rare. In fact, being diabetic or hypoglycemic, or not exercising because of arthritis or fibromyalgia means you need to remember that the worst thing for your condition and ultimate health is staying overweight.
Most people simply gained their extra pounds a little at a time, quite honestly, without huge binges, over the years. They just ate a little too much on a regular basis and didn't burn it off with exercise. All they need to do is eat a little less, in the form of more healthful foods which aren't so fattening and/or smaller portions. Less sugar and empty calories in the form of carbs and more protein and vegetables and fruits help. Don't tell me you're too poor. A pound of chips costs more than a pound of carrots or cabbage. If carrots were 1000 calories, you'd crave them. If ice cream were a diet food, you'd loathe it. Give me a break! If you need some carbs and fat for your health (nerve linings, electrolyte balance), try a little cracker (whole grain), not a Whopper. If you crave meat, go for chicken or salmon, not greasy burgers. Anyway, there's nothing you can't eat a little, and you won't be hungry if you fill up on the "good" foods.
However, if you're likely to binge eat cereal, ice cream, sweets, donuts or bologna, don't have it in your home. When you eat the stuff, let it be a small amount under supervision outside of home. Maybe some day, you'll learn moderation. Maybe not and it will always be a trigger. If you're compulsive and think you can't cope unless you're on a strict diet, in a support group or have time to document and measure all your foods, correct your brain and know that you can think about what you're doing and be responsible for everything which goes into your mouth without all that fuss. If you screw up sometimes, you can compensate by doing much better during the next meal or next day by focusing on cooked veggies, salad, etc.. Drink water, tea, maybe coffee, not soda.
Nothing wrong with support and some diets, but there's always the excuse of too much stress and no extra time. So, be smart enough to realize that the stress of being overweight, the joy of self-control and a healthy life, and the time it takes to eat all that crap isn't worth it. There is no food on Earth for which it is worth destoying your health. Take a breath, look around, find some joy and release in a color, a person, a tree, whatever is near you to focus your attention. Appreciate being alive, instead of numbing yourself with food. PLEASE!!!!!