Overeating was initially treated purely as a physical or a hormonal problem. Then it was blamed of genes. For a long time no thought was given to finding its roots in one’s mind. However, in the second half of the last century it was thought about, studied and is now confirmed, that overeating is primarily a psyche-based problem.

It is observed that many people struggling and fighting with their obesity are those who are carrying a lot of emotional baggage. They fill their hunger for love with a box of chocolates. These are called ‘comfort foods’. Compulsive eating (bulimia) reflects a hunger for life, love and emotional nourishment. There is a feeling of emptiness inside which they are desperately trying to fill up in a physical way, as they see no other way of overcoming it. Frequently the individual involved is very insecure and afraid of loss. But if he opens up the limitations of his ego and takes in spiritual nourishment, becoming aware of the fact that there is an inexhaustible source of love and fulfillment within himself, he can be freed of this hunger and can also give love to others. Thus, a real exchange of love and life can come about.

Dr. Max Rosenbaum PhD, an American psychologist, says, “People use their weight as a defense against upsetting problems. Their fat acts as insulation against hurt.”
Many psychologists say that overeating can be treated effectively when people banish negative thought patterns from their psyche and replace them with positive ones. Dr. Kelly Brownell PhD, of the University of Pennsylvania’s Obesity Research Clinic, has studied and categorized four types of negative thoughts.

The first category is “Dichotomous Thinking”. Those with a problem of overeating tend to split their lives into two separate compartments. They are either ‘on’ or ‘off’ their diets and never in between. This is also called ‘light bulb thought pattern’ because a light bulbs are either on or off. They despise the fact that they are on diet and thus subsequently they go to the other extreme of revolting against it by being off the diet. The end result is an imbalance – inner as well as outer.

The second category of negative thinking is “The Awful Imperative”. These people establish strict rules for themselves which, because of normal human nature, they will inevitably break. They will take a vow, “I will never eat sweets again,” or “I will never touch fried eatables in my life”. Naturally they fail… and when they fail, they cannot forgive themselves.

“Dead End Thinking” is the third category. It is based on envy. Overweight people fall into it when they focus on the unchangeable fact that some people seem to ‘eat like horses and still look like models.’ This form of thinking goes nowhere.

Then there is number four: “The Impossible Dream”. Many dieters apparently set unrealistic goals for themselves and then feel guilty about not reaching them. One lady planned to lose 25 kilos in time for her daughter’s marriage. The marriage was just a month away and obviously she could not have done it. She may actually have lost 8 to 10 kilos, but she would still feel as if she failed.

Indeed, self-love is apparently the only way out. Dr. Max Rosenbaum says, “Overweight people must learn to respect their bodies and love themselves. That is very basic to successful weight loss. Overeating is closely related to poor self-concept.” And when they begin to go through withdrawal, as all overweight people do, they have to say to themselves, ‘I respect my body. I love my body. I love myself. I want to live!’

Of course there are also instances where there is a biological reaction as in the case of carbohydrate addiction. This has been only identified and understood by nutritionists. Carbohydrate Addicts (CA) are those, as the name signifies, addicted to carbohydrates and are perpetually hungry. They may or may not be obese depending on the metabolism of their bodies and the will power they exert on themselves, but their life is a perpetual struggle with their carbohydrate craving. When such CA’s have carbs, their body releases an excess of insulin and they break out in hunger pangs. This is very similar to an allergic reaction that some people break out into when eating certain foods. The hunger pangs of CA’s make them eat more carbs for instant gratification and they are caught in a vicious circle. But, relax all you CA’s out there. There is hope. A very simple method can free you of your struggle with the craving. Nutritionists in the United States have helped numerous people to get rid of this addiction by following a certain regime. The CA starts with a protein breakfast (no carbs), followed by a protein, vegetable fiber lunch (no carbs) and ends with a balanced 1/3 protein, 1/3 veg-fibre, 1/3 carbohydrate meal (this balanced meal being only one in a day and to be eaten within one hour). Those wanting to try this regime should consult their doctors and get detailed information on this subject. The doctors claim that one can free oneself from this carb addiction within 3 days, and will never have to struggle again if the recommended eating regime is followed.

Author's Bio: 

The more you read, the more you know; the more you know, the more you understand; the more you understand, the more you become happier and relaxed. And I think happiness and relaxation is what we all need. I welcome all my brothers and sisters to nurture the habit of reading and to earn their own understating towards life. For your innermost wellness – joy, bliss and beyond, read for a few minutes a day. Stay informed @ Balanced Lifestyle Wikipedia, an online health and wellness journal, to nourish and transform your everyday self.