Are Your Thoughts Making You Fat?

Girl looking at herself in the mirror

Keeping weight off begins in your head. Need some evidence? A study of 1,196 normal weight teenagers looked at the effect their attitude about their weight would have on how much they weighed 10-years later *.


The results: the normal weight teenagers who viewed themselves as fat were twice as likely to actually become overweight compared to those who didn’t view themselves as fat.


If you tend to view yourself as fat, what can you do about it? Meg Selig, in Psychology Today**, gives the following suggestions:

  1. When you have a "I'm fat thought" don't panic and immediately go on a restrictive diet or skip a meal. Remind yourself: "It's just a thought and I don't have to act on it."
  2. Take care of yourself in a healthy way. Get plenty of sleep, eat regular meals and get plenty of fiber (OK, that last one didn’t come from Meg but it’s a good one )
  3. Replace your “I'm fat thoughts” with healthy messages like, “When I start to think this way, I'll focus on something more worthwhile, like family or work."

By the way, if the scale does indicate you need to lose weight, don't panic either. Find a healthy way of a eating that promotes sustainable weight loss (like the Full Plate Diet) and follow the three points above.




Lonnie Carbaugh

Lonnie Carbaugh, LPC, NCC,  is a Behavioral Health Counselor at Full Plate Living who has shed and kept off 25 pounds since working for Full Plate Living. He is as dedicated about walking 5 miles a day as he is about his favorite sport, baseball.

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