Depression and Weight Issues - Food is my only comfort...




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Vaitelias
05-12-2014, 06:49 PM
I've had depression my whole life, but its gotten a lot worse over the past several years. SO much worse. And as much as I want (NEED) to lose weight, I just can't seem to give up food. It's the one and only thing that can make me feel just a little bit better, even if only for a short while. I haven't found anything else that can ease the pain like food can. So, I just don't know what to do. I feel like my only options are to be forever fat or eat less while feeling like I want to kill myself all the time (not exaggerating). There's a lot more details to the story, but I'm gonna keep it simple for now.

Have any of you found anything else that has an uplifting effect similar to food? The more depressed I get, the more I eat...and I REALLY need to stop. :(


seabiscuit
05-12-2014, 07:37 PM
Hi there,

I understand about food being comforting, I have found that it was comforting all too long and it is a danger in reality when eaten to excess, that has become my reality. I am currently considering getting Lap-Band. I know that won't solve my issue with emotional eating and it would be a huge lifestyle adjustment, but I find that being obese is negatively affecting my life.

When I used to binge, I eventually started asking myself whether or not it was worth it and I had a moment of reality/a light bulb, what on Earth was I doing to my body!? I still overeat but not to the point that I used to.

Ask yourself if it is worth it to stuff yourself, and numb your emotions, why not try dealing with them in therapy instead? Have you thought about other hobbies that you may enjoy to keep your hands busy such as knitting, writing, playing with an animal or go for walks or swims or bicycle rides?

This is your life, take it back! I don't want you to feel hurt that I am giving tough love but you only live once.

Amy

Mii
05-12-2014, 11:51 PM
No, not really. I am taking appetite suppressants to deal.


astrophe
05-13-2014, 01:14 AM
Which kind of food?

What triggers the depression?

I found reading this book helpful.

http://www.amazon.com/Life-Hard-Food-Easy-Emotional/dp/product-description/0895260573

A.

Earthling
05-14-2014, 12:37 PM
I don't really have anything profound to say about depression that no one has ever said before. Or the eating that accompanies it.
But I can relate to having suicidal thoughts due to depression, most of it I attributed to my parents growing up.

This may or may not help. I know it sounds completely loopy and I am NOT in any way religious, but one thing that SERIOUSLY kept me living was the revelation that I had probably signed a spiritual contract to be here. Trust me, I am not saying this merely because it sounds cool and it is something that I want to be true. I don't want it to be true...but... I think it is. Loopy. I know. But what if?

It is a long story on how I arrived at this conclusion and it will certainly sound strange but the point is... this is what I believe... and it is NOT what I WANT to believe. They are separate things. I wish the whole relationship between life/death/souls/physical reality were different... but I cannot deny the unfortunate pattern that is the best fit in my mind on how things work. Which means... we repeat unlearned lessons. :( And I even know what my lessons are for this life. I have 7 of them.

And while I could break my contract via suicide, I would then be required to repeat my lifetime, or a similar life with the same struggles, all over again. And it would be harder because there would be new lessons attached to it. So ending my life isn't actually ending my life at all. It is just making it harder in the next one.
Now... if you hate living so much... is suicide really a solution? Nope. Bummer.
:(
So, if you are feeling particular edgy one day then ask yourself just What If? I certainly don't want to risk it.

Michou
05-14-2014, 01:02 PM
for me it is art, painting. I started many years ago while I was having chronic pain issues which would make me depress. I started painting and the first thing I would know many hours had passed. I was still in pain but it was not the center of my life any more, the more pain, the more painting. Food or hunger for something is like pain it envelops you until your mind is totally taken by it.

At the end I would feel accomplished instead of defeited to the point that I made a carreer out of it.

Best of luck

patns
05-14-2014, 01:28 PM
If you are eating lots to overcome emotional pain I'll bet you are eating high carb comfort foods. These push you to eat more of them. Instead of trying to cut way back on how much you are eating maybe try to change what you are eating. Get a good low carb cookbook and try to eat that way for a while and see if that helps. Dana Carpender's cookbooks are really good and have recipes that are really satisfying.

lostbutstilltrying
05-14-2014, 02:26 PM
Food is such a trap. We have to eat. When I am not eating, all I think about is eating. When I eat, I am happy - the rest of the world falls away - there is only the tastes, the textures. None of the problems that are always eating away at my brain can break through. The act of eating, is one of profound relief. But then, afterwords - I never have eaten well enough. To much food or the wrong kind of food, or not the right foods - I just feel worse afterwords and then have to deal with that on top of the pile of problems that have now come back.

I feel your pain and I don't know how to break the cycle either.

alexhanney08
06-16-2014, 01:03 AM
Try to find something that will have your interest like painting, drawing, and writing of poems, exercising, and others. It is not all about eating sometimes we need some good activities. Reading books can help you too. When I am sad the more I want to exercise. Yes, exercise is one of my stress reliever and it works for me.

IanG
06-16-2014, 08:59 PM
For me, it's exercise. If I run or weight train, I feel so close to pain/exhaustion that any anxiety or depression is just purged. There is just no room left in my head to be anxious or depressed.

BettyBooty
06-17-2014, 10:01 AM
For me it is exercise, too. I run after dinner, around 7 pm. If I don't get out and run, I am more likely to look for snacks to eat with the kids, and Lord knows I don't need that.

Last week, when my husband was in the hospital, I didn't feel like getting out and exercising and reverted to eating sugary and carby snacks all evening. Like, finishing a box of cheesy-crackers or the kids' fruit snacks every other day. Terrible cycle to be back in, and I felt like dog poop by Friday. I am feeling so much better now that I am getting out again in the evenings.
***

Just wanted to add that before getting on meds and into therapy, my go-to aside from food was smoking. Two lovely habits for sure! Everybody desperately wants to be a fat smoker, right? I was sure that I was destined to be sad and die young so I kind of didn't give a damn. Proper medication and some therapy really helped me see that I needed to love myself and treat my body better. It isn't always easy, but just gotta keep moving forward.

flower123
06-18-2014, 02:57 AM
Hi i hear ya re the depression. i too suffer from it. And I have been baking and eating the most outrageous browinies. Complete comfort baking and eating. I do not exercise. It would be great if i did. But I dont.

What you write about is such a tough one, I know. I love cooking. It is my passion. I love eating. It is my comfort. And yet, somehow I found the way to get in the groove of dieting. Then the comfort was in the way I felt losing the weight.

I wish I had the forumla re how to, as I call it, get into the groove of it. Its one of those things I call "a grace". Like when I stopped smoking cigarettes. One day I was ready. It was very hard. but I was resolved. I cant tell anyone how to do it. Because I do not know. I know some people have luck with food issues using meridian tapping aka eft.

I know that getting involved in a hobby cann help divert the thoughts of food. Although sometimes with depression getting involved in doing anything is not possible. I have been maintaining. and yet i know that overeating relapse is just a breath away. And truthfully, I am in relapse at the moment. Scary stuff.

I am sending good thoughts your way. I know only too well how hard this whole thing is. Its been a lifelong struggle for me. Both depression and weight. And believe me, lifelong is not a short time when it comes to this chick :D

lucindaarrowspark
06-18-2014, 07:04 AM
I suffer/suffered from depression too. I have been mean to my kids b/c I wanted them to go to sleep so I could eat my sugar laden binge food of choice in private. I avoided social situations because I was embarrassed at how fat I got.
I had chronic headaches and paranoid thoughts. I was always short tempered with my husband and I treated him as though he thought I was a burden.
And then I hit rock bottom. I wore the same ratty night gown for days in a row. I stopped brushing my teeth and my hair.
I found this community, 3fatchicks and I am now in recovery!

kcandponies
06-20-2014, 09:22 AM
Ugh, it's a terrible circle. Depressed because I am fat. Eat because I am depressed. Stay fat, stay depressed. It never ends. At one point my Dr. decided we should try meds. I tried a few, hated the side effects then read a book "The Depression Cure" by Stephen Ilardi. Basically, the recommendations are takeing vitamins, fish oil, getting enough sleep, getting sunlight, exercising, and having a support system. While I don't think you can CURE depression this way, I will say my mood has improved about 50% just by adding a few things. I get outside more, even if just to sit and read. I try to take a walk a few times a week - not running or powerwalking or going to the gym. Just a walk. I count shopping for 3 hours with a friend walking. I shared my struggle with a friend and she check on me and is encouranging without nagging. I am taking fish oil capsules and vitamins. I need to sleep more, but who has the time?
There has to be SOMETHING that will help your mood lift. Do you have time to volunteer? It is puppy and kitten season right now and millions of animals need homes. Shelters will let you volunteer to clean cages....and who can be sad when they are playing with puppies or kittens? Watch your favorite movie, or a bunch of comedies. Laughing helps boost your mood. Take a hot bath. Don't focus on just the food. Don't try to give up eating either, it won't work and you will just feel worse when you binge. I am still depressed, still fat, and still a work in progress. It was taking these little steps over a few months that helped me get strong ehough to now deal with a diet and losing the weight.
Hugs!!!

Gingerjv
06-20-2014, 01:54 PM
I am truly an emotinal eater! I also suffered from depression. But i found out the way out: healthy food and hobbies!! Try to find something that will help you to forget about the food! do pleasant things for yourself: take a bath, go to the long walk, buy something you really wanted but couldn't for some reasons. Hobbies and interests help to forget about the food for sure!

seagirl
06-20-2014, 02:21 PM
For me, visiting my doctor and getting a prescription for Wellbutrin. Just as you can't will yourself out of having cancer, very often depression is a medical issue that requires actual medicine to fix it.

PumpkinField
06-20-2014, 03:39 PM
I have been in Wellnutrin for years. Sometimes I have to increase it other times if have been on lower doses. But ultimately Overeaters Anonymous helped me with binging. I have relapses but know when I'm in them and know why. I love to swim and exercise lifts endorphins that make you feel better. I keep a poster on my fridge that has 50 reasons why exercise is important so I see it every time I open my fridge. You just need to take the first step and get out and do it. Hobbies can help too, I sew, craft, paint, draw or decorate. When my home looks good I feel good.

Just know your not alone! One small step can lead to big leaps. Just make yourself get started!

startanew
06-20-2014, 05:39 PM
I don't really have anything profound to say about depression that no one has ever said before. Or the eating that accompanies it.
But I can relate to having suicidal thoughts due to depression, most of it I attributed to my parents growing up.

This may or may not help. I know it sounds completely loopy and I am NOT in any way religious, but one thing that SERIOUSLY kept me living was the revelation that I had probably signed a spiritual contract to be here. Trust me, I am not saying this merely because it sounds cool and it is something that I want to be true. I don't want it to be true...but... I think it is. Loopy. I know. But what if?

It is a long story on how I arrived at this conclusion and it will certainly sound strange but the point is... this is what I believe... and it is NOT what I WANT to believe. They are separate things. I wish the whole relationship between life/death/souls/physical reality were different... but I cannot deny the unfortunate pattern that is the best fit in my mind on how things work. Which means... we repeat unlearned lessons. :( And I even know what my lessons are for this life. I have 7 of them.

And while I could break my contract via suicide, I would then be required to repeat my lifetime, or a similar life with the same struggles, all over again. And it would be harder because there would be new lessons attached to it. So ending my life isn't actually ending my life at all. It is just making it harder in the next one.
Now... if you hate living so much... is suicide really a solution? Nope. Bummer.
:(
So, if you are feeling particular edgy one day then ask yourself just What If? I certainly don't want to risk it.

This is similar to what I believe. I was raised in the church, and this was something they definitely didnt teach, but I like to believe it's true. I look at life as school for the soul. I think I'm failing miserably but still learning something as I go.

For the OP...food is definitely a comfort and an addiction for me as well. I agree that for the emotional eater, low carb is the way to go because you can still enjoy food for comfort, just different foods. You can eat a whopping 600-800 more calories then most dieters and still lose weight. This won't solve the root of the problem though, and that's where I'm at now. Therapy is what I need and I know this, I've just not worked up the courage to start it yet.

flower123
06-21-2014, 04:17 AM
I don't really have anything profound to say about depression that no one has ever said before. Or the eating that accompanies it.
But I can relate to having suicidal thoughts due to depression, most of it I attributed to my parents growing up.

This may or may not help. I know it sounds completely loopy and I am NOT in any way religious, but one thing that SERIOUSLY kept me living was the revelation that I had probably signed a spiritual contract to be here. Trust me, I am not saying this merely because it sounds cool and it is something that I want to be true. I don't want it to be true...but... I think it is. Loopy. I know. But what if?

It is a long story on how I arrived at this conclusion and it will certainly sound strange but the point is... this is what I believe... and it is NOT what I WANT to believe. They are separate things. I wish the whole relationship between life/death/souls/physical reality were different... but I cannot deny the unfortunate pattern that is the best fit in my mind on how things work. Which means... we repeat unlearned lessons. :( And I even know what my lessons are for this life. I have 7 of them.

And while I could break my contract via suicide, I would then be required to repeat my lifetime, or a similar life with the same struggles, all over again. And it would be harder because there would be new lessons attached to it. So ending my life isn't actually ending my life at all. It is just making it harder in the next one.
Now... if you hate living so much... is suicide really a solution? Nope. Bummer.
:(
So, if you are feeling particular edgy one day then ask yourself just What If? I certainly don't want to risk it.
Earthling, I think we would get along well. I have views that sound the same as you. I will not go into more detail. Suffice to say what you wrote sounds like I could have written it.
This is similar to what I believe. I was raised in the church, and this was something they definitely didnt teach, but I like to believe it's true. I look at life as school for the soul. I think I'm failing miserably but still learning something as I go.

For the OP...food is definitely a comfort and an addiction for me as well. I agree that for the emotional eater, low carb is the way to go because you can still enjoy food for comfort, just different foods. You can eat a whopping 600-800 more calories then most dieters and still lose weight. This won't solve the root of the problem though, and that's where I'm at now. Therapy is what I need and I know this, I've just not worked up the courage to start it yet.
I wonder if someone can be failing miserably and learning? I judge myself. But from what I have been told, I am not failing as I think I am. Its a judgement imposed on the self that is misled. I bet you are not failing. Just my guess. I think when people grapple with depression they naturally think they are failing. Even if they are not. I have a feeling you are not failing. I realize I do not know you. But it is the feeling I get from your words.

I agree that therapy to get to the root of the prob is great. Comfort. Addiction. For me thats so true. I try to keep low carb. Although I also have to do low cal. I have to do both. But the low carbs sure do help.
For me, visiting my doctor and getting a prescription for Wellbutrin. Just as you can't will yourself out of having cancer, very often depression is a medical issue that requires actual medicine to fix it.
I totally agree. Some people can use exercise and suppliments etc. Others dont have much luck with that. Its all so individual. The important thing is that people are able to find what works well for them.

Thanks everyone who wrote on this thread. It is so good to not be alone. Even though I am sorry others are in pain with this.

startanew
06-21-2014, 01:24 PM
Earthling, I think we would get along well. I have views that sound the same as you. I will not go into more detail. Suffice to say what you wrote sounds like I could have written it.

I wonder if someone can be failing miserably and learning? I judge myself. But from what I have been told, I am not failing as I think I am. Its a judgement imposed on the self that is misled. I bet you are not failing. Just my guess. I think when people grapple with depression they naturally think they are failing. Even if they are not. I have a feeling you are not failing. I realize I do not know you. But it is the feeling I get from your words.

I agree that therapy to get to the root of the prob is great. Comfort. Addiction. For me thats so true. I try to keep low carb. Although I also have to do low cal. I have to do both. But the low carbs sure do help.


Thanks. It helps to hear it from someone else. I really don't have a supportive family, my dh doesn't believe in mental illness so it's been tough. But that's why I'm here...to talk it out with people who understand.

flower123
06-22-2014, 01:55 AM
Thanks. It helps to hear it from someone else. I really don't have a supportive family, my dh doesn't believe in mental illness so it's been tough. But that's why I'm here...to talk it out with people who understand.
startannew, I am so sorry he "doesn't believe in mental illness". That makes it so hard. I do not have a h or sig. other. But there are people in my family of origin who think I should just get over it. Those kinds of messages cause me to feel isolated. It is difficult for me to not feel shame because of how I am. They believe that these things can be overcome with some good meds and an attitude change. And for some people, that has worked well. But not all people are that fortunate. Glad you have some place to go. Here!

kcandponies
06-23-2014, 03:25 PM
I once heard "Telling someone who has depression - What do you have to be depressed about? You have a great life! - is like telling an asthmatic - what do you mean you can't breathe, there is plenty of air in here!"

startanew
06-23-2014, 04:56 PM
I once heard "Telling someone who has depression - What do you have to be depressed about? You have a great life! - is like telling an asthmatic - what do you mean you can't breathe, there is plenty of air in here!"

Yes that's perfect. I've tried explaining it to him until I'm blue in the face, he just doesn't get it. He thinks I should just get up and get over it. He doesn't understand that it's affecting me physically as well. Don't get me wrong, he's very supportive in most aspects of life,just not this. It's so frustrating.