It starts with the argument that there is a depression epidemic that is spreading, and the likely reason is because our lifestyles. — Gregg Henriques Ph.D.
Weight gain or weight loss can be linked with depression. Both can be affected by the other, and it is hard to know which comes first. In research conducted in the Netherlands in coordination with psychologists, it was found out that obesity can increase the chances of having depression by 55 percent. Also, having depression could lead to excess or overeating, that increases obesity by 58 percent.
The limbic is the part of the brain that is responsible for the emotion which also controls the appetite. When a person is depressed, his or her emotional part of the brain can get disturbed, and that leads to the disturbance of the appetite, too. This is why depression and weight issues are linked to each other.
Weight management can also be a sensitive issue. People who are overweight see themselves as “ugly” or “unwanted” because of the beauty industry standards. Then, this can be a cause of depression that makes you want to eat more to soothe your emotions, and this can be a cycle.
Also, the medication used to treat depression have some side effects that can cause weight gain or weight loss.
Experts know that maintaining a healthy weight can protect people from developing other issues including depression, loss of self-esteem, and anxiety. — John Smith, Ph.D.
Depression And Weight Gain Versus Weight Loss
As said before, when depression sets in, it signals the part of the brain responsible for emotions which set off your appetite. People have different problems with depression and weight management because you either have depression and weight gain or depression and weight loss.
Whether you gain or lose weight is because of your unique biology and your coping mechanisms. But, bot weight gain and weight loss can both be possible for someone who has depression.
The type of depression symptoms your experience might have something to do with whether you gain or lose weight. It all depends on how depression affects your body, and for some, they might not have any appetite, and for some, they might eat in excess.
Depression and weight gain is a much more common problem than depression and weight loss. A person with depression may not be able to eat but won’t lose weight at dangerous levels. But for people who are experiencing weight gain, they might become obese and develop heart disease, diabetes, and obesity.
The Relationship Between Depression And Eating Disorders
There are two major types of eating disorders that are tied with depression: binge – eating disorder; is characterized by overeating as a way of coping with unwanted emotions and bulimia; an eating disorder that causes the person to overeat and then try to get rid of it, usually by vomiting.
In a study conducted, bulimia has affected a high percentage of people with depression, with 50% of them diagnosed with major depression. So treating the depression can also help in weight management for people with bulimia.
Depression treatments can also help with treating binge – eating disorder because people tend to eat to compensate for their negative emotions.
Anorexia nervosa, on the other hand, is an entirely different form of mental illness and is not tied with depression.
Tips For Healthy Weight Management
Finding a way to battle both depression and weight gain can be a difficult job. Finding a way to do both is very important to help lower risks of other serious problems.
Here are some helpful tips for managing your weight:
Examine The Relationship Between Your Depression And Food.
Analyze your feelings with your weight and be mindful with what you eat. You need to set boundaries and limits to help you manage your weight. Think about your food as your power source to a healthy life and not just something to cope with your emotions.
Take It Slow.
You may be feeling overwhelmed when suffering from depression, so taking weight management slowly can be right for you. If you want to start cutting out sugar in your food, try to eliminate them for at least a week and see if you can handle another week until you cut sugar completely.
Turn The TV Off And Get Moving.
Depression can make you feel tired but making yourself stand up and get out of the house can give you positive energy, and it will also help you with maintaining or losing weight. Every small step counts. You don’t have to hit the gym or run five miles immediately. Gradually do physical activities.
After one of Dr. Blumenthal’s studies of patients with major depressive disorder, he concluded that exercise was as effective as antidepressants in relieving patients’ symptoms. — Matt James Ph.D.
Ask Your Doctor If Your Medication Is Interfering With Your Weight-Management Efforts.
It’s good to ask your doctor if your medication is adding to your weight gain or weight loss. Then, from there, you can consult with your doctor to try other medicines that suit your weight-management goals.
Consult With A Registered Dietitian.
Having a dietitian help you with weight management is one less worry. You can now be sure that the food you eat is suitable for the kind of weight management you are doing and with a dietitian to help you, you are on your way to being better.