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Why Mental Health Should Be a Key Part of Your Weight Loss Journey

Shedding extra pounds and maintaining a healthy weight is not just about counting calories or exercising regularly; it also involves taking care of your mental and emotional well-being. Research shows that individuals who are able to manage their stress, anxiety, and emotional eating habits are more likely to achieve and maintain weight loss success in the long run.

If you’re on a weight loss journey, it’s important that you’re also paying attention to your mindset because it does influence how easy the process will be, how we’ll feel throughout and even our ability to keep the weight off long-term. According to The Arrow House, an institution that provides mental health treatment for teens and adults, “it’s impossible to treat our mental health as a separate entity to our physical health – the two are inextricably linked. If you want to be a healthier person all around, you also need to pay attention to how you feel.”

Whether you’re trying to lose baby weight or shed a few extra pounds for a vacation, there are things we have to do to ensure success that have nothing to do with what we eat and how much we work out.

How does mental and emotional health
influence the process of losing weight?


One important aspect of mental and emotional health that can impact weight loss is stress management. Stress can lead to overeating, particularly of high-calorie, sugary foods, which can contribute to weight gain. You might have all the best intentions to eat in a calorie deficit and stick to your weight loss plan, but if you’re dealing with a lot of stress, you’re more likely to sabotage yourself by reaching for a tub of ice-cream, a large slab of chocolate or a super sugary cocktail. If you are prone to periods of high stress, consider taking action on this. Consider practicing stress-management techniques such as deep breathing exercises, meditation, or yoga.

Emotional Eating

Another important aspect is managing emotional eating. Emotional eating refers to using food as a way to cope with negative emotions such as stress, sadness, or boredom. This type of eating can lead to consuming more calories than needed, which can contribute to weight gain. To overcome emotional eating, individuals can try identifying their triggers and developing alternative coping mechanisms, such as going for a walk, calling a friend, or journaling.

Self Esteem

It’s also important to have a positive attitude towards yourself and your body. People who have negative body image tend to give up on their weight loss goals more easily. To improve your body image, you can focus on self-compassion and self-care, and try to view your body in a more positive light.


The process of losing weight requires a lot of patience, dedication, commitment and hard work – meaning it requires quite a bit of mental fortitude. If you don’t have a solid mental health practice in place, it’s harder to stick with your weight loss plan, especially when you don’t get results quickly. Very often in a weight loss program, it might take longer for the results to start showing up on the scale or in the mirror. When this happens, one can easily give up and undo all their hard-earned progress. It’s really important to have a mindset that keeps you going through the ups and downs of the process.

Getting to the Solution

Support from a therapist or counselor can be beneficial for addressing underlying emotional or mental health issues that may be impacting weight loss. A therapist can help individuals work through emotions, develop coping mechanisms, and provide guidance in creating a healthy relationship with food. Many people struggle to lose weight because of a binge eating disorder, food addiction and other counterproductive conditions. Getting to the bottom of such issues can help you stick with the program and truly make positive changes in your life.

Mental and emotional health play a crucial role in weight loss. You might think that all you have to do to reach your goals and keep the weight loss is focus on diet and exercise, but your emotions and mental state can be just as impactful to your results. Taking care of yourself extends beyond the physical – if you truly want your life to be enhanced by weight loss, make sure you also take care of your mental health. As you stick to your goals it is only natural your mental health will benefit! 

By managing stress, emotional eating, and having a positive attitude towards yourself, you can set yourself up for weight loss and mental health success. Support from a therapist can be beneficial in addressing underlying emotional or mental health issues that may be impacting weight loss if you find you are stuck!

For me personally, I love to try to exhaust myself doing what I love. That includes a lot of physical activity, like surfing every day!

Be well, friends.


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