scale with measuring tape and a red apple on top of the scale

The Psychology Behind Weight Gain: Start Your Journey to a Perfect Body Today


by Olga Levina 

Both psychologists and nutritionists are certain that there are more complex and profound reasons behind weight gain than just a simple inability to balance your diet. Good news is that you don’t necessarily need a therapist to find out what exactly stands in your way to your perfect body. 

Here are the most common causes of weight gain:

1. Fat literally protects you from the harsh world. 

Scared Woman in Beanie Hat Hiding Under Bed CoversThis is probably the most common psychological reason as to why people are gaining weight. Fat cells protect you by literally forming a cushion between you and the world. It’s rather like using bubble wrap to protect your delicate china! This is a useful defense mechanism when you are very sensitive, easily hurt, or feel bullied, whether it be verbally, physically or sexually, or unsafe.  

Another person’s energy can also affect you in a multitude of ways.  It can leave you feeling very vulnerable, drained, or off-balance. And that can make you obsessive about staying in control and holding your own space.

How to help: With this one it depends on how bad your reasons to “protect” yourself are. If that reason is a toxic person, try to avoid them or change your attitude towards them. If there is a more serious trauma, maybe psychological help won’t hurt this time. 

2.You are trying to stay noticeable because of insecurity. 

Intimidating Man in Suit Smoking a Cigar A good example of this is a professional woman who is surrounded by strong, confident people both at work and at home. She might be afraid that if she gets any “smaller” people might stop noticing her. They won’t listen or care about her. 

How to help: If this sounds like you, try to think of a successful, hardworking person that also has a great body. It doesn’t have to be a Hollywood star, it might be someone you know. Talk to them or try to get inspired by them, their work, and their looks.

3. Eating is your favorite thing to do. 

Smiling Woman Eating Cake Messily Think of some of the things you enjoy to do. Do you enjoy hiking with your dog? Do you like going out to the movies with your friends or maybe hitting the gym? 

Now compare those things with the times that you eat and ask, and honestly answer, yourself, “what do you like doing the most?“

If the answer is eating, try to remember those times when you were a kid. What did you like doing the most? Did you dream about being a professional dancer or a singer? 

Try to rediscover that childhood dream of yours. You might find yourself a new hobby that brings you the most joy, and food won’t be as important to you anymore. 

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