How Mental Health Affects Weight Loss
Posted on December 8, 2015 by Donna Jenkins
When it comes to weight loss, we all know that diet and exercise are the keys to losing and maintaining weight loss. There is one thing that people often overlook, however, in their quests to get into shape: their mental health.
A recent study shows that around 90 percent of people ignore their mental health as an important aspect of getting into shape. While it is true that weight loss is simple mathematics- calories consumed versus calories burned, it is not always easy to keep track of such things except under laboratory settings. In our daily lives, due to our businesses and jobs, meal times and options vary.
The mental aspect of such things is not so simple, either. We are conditioned to associate food with positive emotions. Food is the one drug, other than alcohol or tobacco, that we can consume without thought in order to make us feel better. The simple answer is to eat only what we need.
First, you must rethink rewarding or comforting yourself with food. One question you must ask yourself before settling down to eat is whether or not you are eating because you are hungry or whether it is for other reasons. If you’re not hungry, it may be time to push away from the plate.
Another recommendation is to treat any underlying mental health issues such as depression or anxiety before beginning a diet. Since food has been known to release dopamine into our brains, we often consume it to get that feel good feeling. While food, exercise, and even sex cannot compete with drugs like cocaine or methamphetamine, depriving your brain of this chemical can lead to binges, knocking you off of your weight loss journey.
A final recommendation is to learn to reward yourself the right way. When you meet a weight goal, or feel like you deserve a “treat,” get creative with your rewards. Try out a new hobby or go to that restaurant you’ve always wanted to try. Like all things, however, treat yourself in moderation and only when you meet set goals.
If you are looking to lose weight or ramp up your fitness routine, contact person trainer Frank Tortorici. He can help you reach your diet and fitness goals.
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