Are You Getting A Psychological Positive Benefit From Staying Overweight Than Losing the Weight?

It is very familiar that most people who are overweight and try to lose weight may find their efforts successful for a while. But after each attempt, they regain their lost weight (and more). However, sometimes, you may find yourself unsuccessful at shedding a few pounds because you can only stay committed to healthier eating and lifestyle choices for a few days. You might think you benefit from staying overweight psychologically when you are not.

Check out this exciting YouTube presentation by Jamie Fonte entitled: Why 80 Percent of your Overweight may be in your mind.

Could it be that your brain is working against you? For example, is it possible that your mind prefers you overweight? 

Here are some subconscious ways that your mind may be holding on to your unhealthy habits and keeping you overweight.

Your Identity

If you have been overweight your entire life or most of your life, you have likely developed coping strategies to help you feel more comfortable or find your “niche” in your social circles. If you aren’t the “hunky guy” or the “hot babe,” then you must come up with another identity. For many, that might be the fat but funny one, the fat but happy one, or the fat but disgruntled one. Whatever it is, it is part of how you identify. It’s part of who you are.

Trying to lose weight can seem scary because it would mean losing part of your identity. If you are not the fat but (fill in the blank) person, who are you? These questions may be playing in your mind whenever you consider what it would mean to lose weight and change your habits meaningfully.

Your Sense of Self-Worth

For others, you may have everything you have ever wanted in other aspects of your life but struggle in just one area – your weight. If your life is good in all other elements, you may question whether you deserve a perfect existence. But, on the other hand, if you lack self-worth, you may not feel as though you deserve to have the kind of body you want.

By staying overweight, you are saying to the world, “it’s okay that I’m not healthy. I have everything else I could want, so it wouldn’t be fair if I had it all.” You are justifying your poor health treatment because you don’t think you deserve health and happiness in all areas of your life.

Your Security

Most people with food addiction or weight loss problems have emotional connections or attachments to eating. For example, you may equate food to love, safety, economic stability, or security. Whatever the passion, it extends beyond simple nutrition and fuel for your body. By feeding yourself and others, you are showing them love and security; you are showing commitment to them or honoring family traditions, even when these could damage your health.

Your Sense of Control

Many people who struggle with food and weight loss do so because they feel the need to control their lives or because dieting somehow relinquishes that control to someone else. However, if you were raised with strict rules about food, if the food was used as a reward or punishment, or if you have control issues in other aspects of your life, changing how you eat may be more about whether you are in control of your emotions and choices in life than it is about your ability to control your food intake.

Final Thoughts

Suppose you are tired of being on the dieting roller coaster and ready to commit to a lasting and permanent change that will lead to a healthier weight and better well-being. In that case, understanding how these psychological roadblocks may impede your progress can help. So, if your subconscious keeps you overweight to maintain the status quo or enables you to cope with childhood pain or identity questions, then you know where to start working to ensure success on your road to better health.


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Jeff Moji

Hi there. I'm Jeff Moji, an engineer, information technologist, and health enthusiast. I have set up this website to explore the best ways to keep fit and healthy as I grow older during this pandemic-prone time. Please keep in touch so we can exchange information and spur one another on.

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