Common Reasons for Overeating

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Obesity is a very serious problem today and many people from all different demographics and walks of life are affected by. There are many reasons as well as a number of contributing factors involved with the onset of obesity. However, the number one cause of obesity remains overeating. There are a lot of things that cause people to overeat. Some of those things are related to medical conditions but more often than not are simply a result of poor willpower or eating at inappropriate times. It is important to understand that overeating can be caused by things like stress, emotional disorders, boredom and a number of other things. Following is some helpful insight on the subject of overeating, as well as some of the more common reasons that people do it.

Identify the Cause of Overeating

Before you can do anything to stop yourself from overeating, it is important to determine the reason you are doing it in the first place. Sometimes the cause of overeating is not immediately evident. This is because there can be so many different causes and some of them so deep rooted that they are not easy to uncover overnight. In many cases people go through years of therapy before they are able to even touch on the surface issues that are causing them to overeat. This is what causes so many people to go through periods of time in which they go on “yo yo” diets and lose a bunch of weight only to gain it all back. It becomes a vicious cycle that seems to have no end. In order to overcome obesity, which is caused by overeating, it is important to figure out the root of the problem in order to begin the healing process.

Eating to Fill a Void in Your Life

There are some people who overeat simply because they are looking to fill some void or emptiness in their lives. These people may find themselves eating literally round-the-clock and never feeling satisfied. In fact, in some cases they may actually eat so much that they make themselves feel sick. Usually, these people go through cycles in which they are fine for specific amount of time between eating binges. Typically, when things are going well in their lives and they are happy, they will go for a period of months without ever overeating. Unfortunately, there almost always comes a point when the old habits of overeating, in order to compensate for feelings of disappointment, sadness or depression will return. It is very hard for a person, who eats to fill a void in his/her life, to overcome this problem without first recognizing that there is in fact a problem.

Deep-Rooted Childhood Causes of Overeating

There are many different things that can cause an adult to overeat as a result of things that have happened in his/her childhood. There are many dynamics involved in causing someone to become dependent on food in early infancy. One of the biggest mistakes parents make is to assume that any time their baby cries, it is because the baby is hungry. This causes parents to offer a bottle anytime the baby makes some noise or stirs. I fortunately, what this does is programs the baby to become used to eating in order to feel comfort. As a result, the child grows up associating food with comfort, hence the term “comfort food.” This is not to say that ordinary and well-balanced people will not ever find themselves relying on food, for. For example, many times when you’re not feeling well you may have a craving for soup. Chances are this is because you were given soup as a child anytime you were ill. However, there is a big difference between occasionally craving “comfort food” and turning to it on a daily basis.

Anxiety Eating

A lot of people, of all ages, overeat when they become nervous or anxious. On the other hand, there are also some people who lose their appetite and refrain from eating whenever they are anxious or nervous. The truth is this could go to either end of the spectrum but the people who overeat when they become anxious stand the risk of becoming obese over long periods of time. Obviously, the best way to overcome this type of overeating is to eliminate anything which causes severe stress or anxiety. Sometimes this is easier said than done as the stress and anxiety may be caused by some sort of family issue that is not easily written off. However, there is always a way to at least significantly reduce stress, thereby also reducing the occasions in which someone may overeat as a result. If you have a problem with severe anxiety and feel that your eating has become out of control because of this, it is best to seek the advice of some sort of professional in order to help you get a handle on things and learn new ways of coping.

Eating when you are not hungry is another behavior which can cause you to become obese. It can be very hard to determine whether or not you are actually hungry. For this reason many people eat even when they are not truly hungry or their body is not truly in need of food. This is a major contributing factor for obesity in men, women and children. One rule of thumb to follow, if you are not sure whether or not you are actually hungry or just craving something to eat, is to examine just how finicky you may be feeling. For example, people who are truly hungry will not turn down food just because it’s not something they are craving. On the contrary, if you’re hungry, you will eat just about anything that is offered to you, within reason of course. A very good sign that you are not really hungry but rather experiencing a desire to eat something is continuously opening the refrigerator and cabinets looking for something to eat, yet not being able to decide on anything. Try waiting until you have actual hunger pangs to have your meal, avoiding food in the interim.

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Christopher Jacoby

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