Here's some of the reasons we might overeat:
Emotional Eating or Comfort Eating can be a response to learning or conditioning when we were small. Some clients say to me they have always had problems with their weight. Sometimes in these cases a belief about the role of food has been created early on in life. Think of the parent that always comforted a distraught child with a sweet treat to make them feel better. It’s easy to imagine how this might set up an unhelpful association between emotions and eating.
Snacking & Binge Eating can be purely a habit. If someone has got into the habit of always having a big bag of crisps when they sit down in front of the TV then that habit can soon become automatic – “sit down, reach for crisps, eat them”.
Binge Eating can also be a response to an inner conflict. For example, a workaholic may have part of them that wants them to slow down and if the only time they relax is when they eat, then that part may urge them to eat more. A positive intention, but with unintended consequences.
Does all of you want to lose the weight? Sometimes clients who come to me for weight loss can sense an inner conflict. Part of them wants to lose the weight but another part of them doesn’t and it’s the second part that’s in control at the point you throw your diet or give up trying to keep the weight off. Why would this possibly be? Reasons I have come across in the past include protection from intimacy, hiding behind weight gain as an excuse for not going for promotion at work due to lack of confidence, a deep association between eating and feeling loved.