Helping Obesity With Psychotherapy
Obesity has become a major health problem with an increasing number of the population now classed as either overweight or obese. To tackle the obesity problem there has to be an effective weight loss program that incorporates good nutrition and exercise. However, for some people poor diet and a lack of activity may be caused by psychological factors that are difficult to overcome. Obesity may have underlying causes that are not necessarily obvious. Psychotherapy can unlock the problems of overeating and help with your weight loss.
Successful weight loss requires a set of solutions to treat both the mental and physical problems of obesity. Trying to treat obesity with diet alone will not always alter the behaviour that triggers the desire to eat. Nor will a healthy diet necessarily boost self-esteem and confidence. These are psychological problems that need to be overcome and psychotherapy for obesity can help you do that.
A psychotherapist can help with self esteem and obesity
Being obese or overweight can cause people to have very low self-esteem. Occasionally, low self-esteem was a contributory factor in becoming obese and so the individual finds themselves in a vicious circle – the more they eat, the worse their self-esteem becomes. In this case, trying to treat the physical symptoms of obesity may be problematic without addressing the deep rooted psychological problem. Psychotherapy works with the patient to identify the cause of their obesity problem and improve their confidence and outlook on life.
Some people require drastic surgical measures to help lose weight (stomach stapling, gastric bypass). Anybody facing surgery suffers psychological strain and many people find that the idea of a ‘new body’ through implants is an invasion on their person. They may argue strongly against the idea or request another procedure to remove the device. There is also the possibility that the body will reject the procedure and that in turn can be harmful to mental well-being.
Obesity surgery requires a mental preparation before the procedure and a period of recovery counselling afterwards. Psychotherapy complements conventional treatments by talking through the process and the possible outcomes. Altering negative thoughts about surgery and its after-effects is an important way to help people with the physical changes they are about to go through.
Psychotherapy helps obesity by identifying problems with food
A psychotherapist will examine the behavioural patterns that are associated with excessive eating leading to obesity. Feelings of constant hunger and the need to snack can come from a restrictive diet that has been prescribed for the weight loss program. This causes a dysfunction in the eating habit as the diet is inappropriate. Compulsive eating may be a way of coping with stress or pressure and creates a haphazard eating pattern. Psychotherapy can help to establish a mealtime routine that will prove extremely beneficial to losing weight.
A psychotherapist lays out simple principles for weight loss. First is self-control and monitoring food intake. Second is setting realistic goals for losing weight that will not be detrimental to health. The third is to recognise signals of wanting to eat outside of the regular eating pattern. These signals can be previous stimuli that triggered the desire to snack in between meals (such as sitting in front of the TV).
Obesity psychotherapy is a proven treatment to help with the behavioural and emotional aspects of weight loss. Overlooking the psychological effects will harm your long-term goals and aspirations so book an appointment with your local psychotherapist and cover all the angles before attempting to lose weight.
Article Submitted By
Daniel Alexander, GoToSee Journalist