Posted - July 2, 2012

Anxious and Overweight?

Weight Loss Surgery for a Calmer Life

Weight Loss Surgery for a Calmer LifeAfter weight loss surgery in Dallas, focus on easing emotional stress and anxiety as you lose weight.

Obesity is not the only epidemic on the rise in the United States. According to recent estimates, one in every five people nationwide is coping with severe anxiety. Anxiety disorders are now the most common type of psychiatric ailments in the United States, coming in far above mood disorders like depression which plague one in every 10 American adults.

The United States is now the most anxious country in the world. This type of statistical relevance makes one wonder where all of this anxiety is coming from, and with one in every three Americans either overweight or obese, it would seem there might be a strong correlation between the two medical concerns.

The Anxiety / Obesity Link

The link between anxiety and obesity is a tricky one. For one thing, it is difficult to determine if a person’s anxiety will drive them to gain weight through habits like emotional eating or if being overweight will increase your anxiety level. A person who is obese or suffers from severe anxiety has a 30 percent increased likelihood of struggling with both conditions. This high co-morbidity leaves more questions than it does answers, but researchers are still working to determine what the causal relationship is between the two.

Here are just a few factors that researchers speculate could be playing a role in the obesity/ anxiety link:

  • People who are obese cope with social stereotypes about overweight people that are often emotionally stressful and insulting. Obesity also prompts many physical ailments and is recognized as an inhibitor to economic growth for a lot of people, which could lead to further financial concerns and more stress.
  • A person who suffers from severe anxiety may have difficulty leaving their home, leading to a more sedentary lifestyle. Severe anxiety also prompts many people to overeat for emotional comfort, and this too could lead to excess weight gain.

Treatment for the Mind and Body

There is a very high incidence of people who lose weight only to regain the weight that they have lost. Chances are you might have even experienced this first hand after attempting countless diets. One of the biggest reasons for this is the return of poor habits, such as emotional eating and unwillingness or inability to exercise regularly.

In order to keep up the positive habits that you formed as you lost weight, it is best to approach weight loss as a way to improve your mental and physical health. Don’t just assume that any anxiety issues you have will disappear after you lose weight. Take the time now to overcome your anxiousness and develop a healthier and happier state of mind.

Soothe anxiety as you lose weight by:

  • Joining a weight loss surgery support group
  • Engaging in relaxing activities like yoga or meditation
  • Talking with a professional, such as a mental health counselor or spiritual leader
  • Keeping a journal and writing down your woes so you do not harbor them in your mind all day and night
  • Developing healthier sleeping habits
  • Finding social support by spending more time with family and friends

These are just a few ways that you can manage stress and ease anxiety levels as you lose weight after weight loss surgery. Don’t rely on your weight loss to make all of the changes in your life that you are hoping for. As you lose weight, maintain control by being proactive about your anxiety. In the end, you just may find yourself feeling a lot happier, in addition to healthier.