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Can a constant binge eating cycle and being obese lead to depression

(28 Posts)
notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 19:45:12

Since 2012 I've been clinically obese and in a cycle of starting a diet, then binge eating and saying to myself I'll start again tomorrow - or I'll start on a 'round' day like Monday. Never happens - if I'm not binging on calorific food on Monday night then I'm certainly doing it by Tuesday or at the latest Wednesday or Thursday. I did stick to a diet for 5 weeks, lost over a stone, but broke my diet due to having to drive home very late one night while tired and ate to keep me going and complete the journey. By the way, after I lost the stone, I was still in the obese category. I eat chocolate - even Easter Eggs in January, bread butter, fried breakfasts, lattes aplenty, fish, chips, sweets, lovely cakes with cream - anything goes!! - usually calorific. Thing is I always vow I'll start my diet on Monday - never do and now I'm depressed. I'm losing interest in work, I cried in work 'cos my life was better before this started in 2012 and I was a normal weight. I had friends then - no friends now. I've got a job and a nice place to live but my quality of life is very low. Can this sort of cycle lead to depression?

notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 19:46:21

Just to say when I'm starting a diet I excercise - but nothing lasts long and I'm in the obese category still

NuffSaidSam Fri 22-May-20 19:47:38

Yes, it can lead to depression.

And also be caused by depression.

What happened in 2012 that started it off?

Sparklesocks Fri 22-May-20 19:49:28

I would say binge eating is intrinsically linked to our emotions and feelings so I don’t think it’s too big a leap to say it could lead to depression because it’s all tied together. Sorry you’ve have such a hard time of it, do you think you could possibly look into some therapy to address your overeating and relationship with food?

notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 19:50:27

NuffSaidSam - I told a serious lie and was ashamed by it.

RestaurantoffBroadway Fri 22-May-20 19:50:58

Yes.
Also, whatever is leading you to eat your feelings can also lead to depression. sometimes starting to look after yourself elsewhere in your life than the diet can help. Sometimes it's purely the emotional impact of being fatter, moving with discomfort, feeling ashamed, the effort of pushing away that feeling of discomfort every day. Sometimes it's the fact that too many fat cells screw with your hormone balance.

For me there's a tipping point of all these where it starts spiralling. I think only you can decide whether it makes sense to start by rebooting your diet or by taking care of yourself psychologically. Both are fine.

notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 19:51:22

Sparklesocks - I've been to see counsellors aplenty before and don't feel they could tell me anything I don't know already.

Chachang Fri 22-May-20 19:51:29

Yes it can (in my opinion). I have been through the same over and over again throughout most of my life, and my eating is very much attached to my mental health, and binge disorder rooted in abuse when I was younger; I guess I've been punishing my body and myself essentially. This sounds so cheesy, but being fortunate enough to access counselling really helped, and as cheesy at this sounds...until I actually learnt to love myself and be proud of my body and all it has achieved, I didn't feel worthy of bothering to try. I'd attached my worth to my size, and life was a long list of I'll do x when I am a healthy weight, I'll feel like this when I reach my target weight etc. It wasn't until I realised now was happening anyway, and I could either enjoy this time too or wait around for something that was getting further away all the time. I had my hair done, bought some clothes I really liked, did the things I had been putting off until I was slim, and honesty the weight began to come off, because it wasn't my biggest focus, and I found solace in things other than food. Sorry if that sounds cheesy, just my thoughts and experience.

notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 19:54:22

Chachang - that is excellent the fact that the weight came off when you treated yourself well and had respect for yourself as you'd have for the thin version of you.

Twigletfairy Fri 22-May-20 19:54:35

Yes, it's a vicious cycle that can be really bloody hard to break

flamegame Fri 22-May-20 19:55:44

I’m not sure what whether you are already depressed when you get into the cycle of binge eating and dieting personally. It’s usually a coping mechanism for emotional pain, focusing on the body to avoid the bigger picture (speaks for self clearly).

Sparklesocks Fri 22-May-20 19:59:20

Sorry to hear that. I think therapy can be really life changing it doesn’t work for everyone. Do you reach for food for comfort when you’ve had a bad day, or as a treat for doing something difficult? Could you try to reframe something else as your reward/comfort instead of food? I know it’s far easier said than done...

TwilightPeace Fri 22-May-20 20:01:05

STOP dieting. Dieting leads to bingeing. It clearly isn’t working for you so it’s madness to continue.

Also, you say you have no friends now. Obviously with the pandemic it’s difficult to meet new people, but not impossible. Online, chatting to neighbours, talking to people when out for walks. Social interaction will make you feel better.
If you feel lonely, are you eating to fill that hole?

What else could you do to improve your quality of life?

EdwinaMay Fri 22-May-20 20:03:13

Were you completely honest with your counsellors. It's hard to face your failings, or what you perceive as your failings.

notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 20:04:04

TwilightPeace - My partner and I split up in 2011 - I miss him acutely and feel guilty for the split. I don't know tbh if I'm eating to fill a hole...

notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 20:04:52

Sparklesocks - I don't use it as either comfort or reward if I'm being honest!

Goawayquickly Fri 22-May-20 20:06:11

Twilight peace is right, bingeing is driven by restriction.

TwilightPeace Fri 22-May-20 20:07:09

Almost 10 years is a very long time to be acutely missing someone. Have you been unable to move on at all?

notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 20:08:27

TwilightPeace - No. I've got acute feeling of guilt and regret.

MaudsMotorbike Fri 22-May-20 20:10:35

Yes, definitely. It's a downward spiral, where one affects the other and as you go round and round down and down you go. Trust me, I've been doing this for years. I wish I knew a way out of it, but over the years I've accepted that this is how I deal with the shitty experinces I had when I was younger, and it's a habbit I find hard to break. That said, I'm not obese any more, just a little overweight. I eat well (mostly), I exercise regularly and I try to be kinder to myself. That means even when I'm binging, I try to eat well. Really nice food, not rubbish. That helps.
I also agree with the other posters, absolutely NO dieting! You need to take care of yourself.

MaudsMotorbike Fri 22-May-20 20:13:21

Cross post there OP. The antidote to shame is empathy. Can you empathise with whatever place you were in back there and forgive yourself for whatever it was? The you then was probably in pain, just like now. Please, whatever you did, let it go. It's in the past now. It's okay to move on with your life.

notthreebad Fri 22-May-20 20:15:11

Thanks MaudsMotorbike - that's reassuring

Elieza Fri 22-May-20 20:19:58

Defo try counselling again. They can sometimes see things we can’t or force us to look at things we have been avoiding. Sometimes talking about it makes us sad but after a while of talking the bad stuff somehow loses its sting. Or they can suggest ways to put it right.

It’s good you are taking the first steps to address your issues. Even a little step is a step.

You can do this. Don’t give up and don’t doubt yourself.

TwilightPeace Fri 22-May-20 20:23:42

OP I hope you are able to move on from the feelings of guilt and regret and start embracing life again. In the meantime as others have said, try to be as kind to yourself as you can.

notthreebad Sat 23-May-20 07:41:02

Thank you all for your feedback on this. I really appreciate it x

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