Monday, September 25, 2017

Is overeating a form of mental illness?

Is overeating a form of mental illness?

I have no answer other than probably? It is a behavior driven by something, and that something does not appear to be physical, at least most of the time. In taking this problem apart, it could be mental, physical, environmental, or conditioned into our automatic responses, which should be able to be overridden with mental effort.

There is enough to demonstrate that some is physical, some is food knowledge, some environmental, but the big portion is just us and our mental issues, if we are actively searching for a solution. There are those too, which do not care or have just given up, and are resolved to relax, just as they are. 

There is no doubt, in my mind, that overeating is conditioned in response to stimulus. That stimulus includes placing our body in front of food, even seeing eatable food, perhaps TV food adds, perhaps even knowing that there is eatable food in the refrigerator... all stimulus. Thinking or talking about food, even writing this is a stimulus. Our conditioned response is to eat. Does that not describe mental illness???? 

So now that I have declared this to be mental illness, is there anything more know about the treatment? Well not much. From Lustig's work we know it is a shortage of serotonin, too much dopamine, cortisol, or a receptor problem... maybe or something else.

In my youth, overeating became a rational solution to the problem, maybe. It was rational to the child mind at least. Once that has become a conditioned response... to any stimulus... now what. Any kind of a aggravation, irritation, irrational person, and my automatic response was to eat, anything would do. So how does one overcome such a deeply conditioned response when we (I) live in such an irrational world?   First, there is no medical help.  This is not a recognized DSM V problem, there is no mental treatments.

There are few psychologists that offer treatment for eating disorders; one that does is a cousin of mine, she appears physically to have overcome her food issues; however, she is a nut bag in other facets of her life. Her thinking system is just not compatible with my reality.

During my working life I did what was necessary to make a living most of the time, then for a while I only took projects for selected good clients. I go through my working life, but then... I retired and regressed. Now I need to make changes again. It does not matter, in the end we all just die anyway.

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