What Causes Sudden and Rapid Weight Gain

On my desk I have a printed document that is over 400 pages long.

It’s a list of emails from Eat Stop Eat customers addressing their experiences with their weight, and specifically asking what does being ‘weight stable’ mean to them.

That was back in 2011.

I kept this document to remind me of one thing: For many people weight gain was related to an event.

Now I’m not talking about slowly gaining 10 to 20 pounds over decades – I’m talking about the phenomena of people who were weight stable (keeping their weight within a 10 pound range for decades) suddenly gaining 20-50 pounds and more over a couple of months, and how this seems to always have to do with a period of high stress.

Bad job, bad relationship, poor health of family member etc.

And before you go thinking that this is just an example of people trying to pass the responsibility of their weight on to something other than themselves, let me tell you that what we know about the science of physiology and hunger supports what they are saying.

Yes, they all knew they were eating too much, but at that point in their lives, they didn’t care – food made them feel better… at least momentarily.

Stress and anxiety can do horrible things to your body, thingst that manifest differenly in different people…

…And for some people it manifests in eating and weight gain.

A big problem arises when these same people try to lose weight while the stress is still present.

It’s a horrible feeling when life is hard, eating makes you happy and depriving yourself makes you miserable again, but thinking of yourself as ‘fat’ also makes you miserable too!

(Interestingly when the stress levels get high enough, the opposite actually occurs and people experience uncontrollable weight loss)

Here’s what this means to you —> Sometimes you have to remove the stress in your life before you can remove the weight. This isn’t true for everyone, but if you’re silently nodding your head right now, it may be you.

Losing weight isn’t easy, it can be stressful, and adding stress on top of already existing stress rarely gives the results you want.

If you’ve struggled with weight loss, and feel like your constantly fighting against gaining weight (as opposed to simply not losing), then take some time and look at your life and see if there is an underlying stress that is sabotaging your effort, then see what dealing with that stress can do for you.

Sometimes, adding MORE stress in the form of dieting and exercising actually is NOT the answer.


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