Friday, September 23, 2016

Don't Stress Out About It (Too Much)

Here at Dr. Feiz & Associates, we know that studies that can seem a bit confusing come out on a regular basis. A new one about the relationship between a tendency towards stress and anxiety being linked in some way to obesity got us thinking about how hard it is to figure out just what it is that triggers the overeating which is responsible for obesity, and also about how challenging it can be to achieve the truly healthy lifestyle we need to defeat it.

Indeed, aside from the matter of whether or not anxious people are more likely to be obese than calmer folks, there's the interesting everyday matter of what tends to trigger overeating. Yes, "stress eating" is a very common phenomenon, experienced by obese and non-obese individuals alike, who find that food tends to calm their anxieties.

Others, however, including at least some people with weight issues, actually tend to eat less and may even lose some weight when they are under some amount of stress. These people experience the equally common phenomenon of losing their appetite entirely when they are deeply worried about something. Indeed, for many people with weight issues, it's not so mcuh stress which can make them overindulge, it's boredom. At the same time, it's important to remember that not all stress is a bad thing; it can help us make important changes in our life and, at the right levels, can actually increase our enjoyment of life. It's all a matter of getting the right balance.

With all these subtleties and differences between individuals, it's no wonder that understanding how obesity works, and how to deal with it, has proven so incredibly difficult. Fortunately, we at least know that bariatric surgery really does seem to be the one thing that helps severely obese individuals to permanently reduce their food intake without being constantly distracted by excessive food cravings. At least there's one thing we don't have to stress out about!

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