men and obesity

finally, here is the long-promised post on the topic of men and obesity. the U.S. national eating disorders association mentions a number of behaviours, physical problems and emotions experienced by men with binge eating disorder. let’s look at a few of them.

behavioral characteristics:

  • hoarding food
  • hiding food and eating in secret; e.g., eating alone or in the car, hiding wrappers

emotional and mental characteristics:

  • feelings of disgust, guilt, or depression during and after overeating
  • binge eating often triggered by uncomfortable feelings such as anger, anxiety, or shame
  • binge eating used as a means of relieving tension, or to “numb” feelings
  • rigid, inflexible “all or nothing” thinking
  • strong need to be in control
  • works hard to please others
  • avoids conflict, tries to “keep the peace”
  • disgust about body size, often teased about their body while growing up
  • feelings of worthlessness
  • depression

physical characteristics:

  • heart and blood pressure problems
  • joint problems
  • abnormal blood-sugar levels
  • fatigue
  • difficulty walking or engaging in physical activities

now of course none of these only apply to men; they’re universal across many people who overeat.

however, how do some of them affect men in particular?

hiding food and eating in secret; e.g., eating alone or in the car, hiding wrappers
many men, regardless of whether they have challenges regarding food, are already less emotionally connected than women. engaging in these secret behaviours can bring this “community deficit” to a dangerous low, resulting in extreme feelings of isolation and loneliness.

disgust about body size, often teased about their body while growing up
men feel more self conscious about their bodies than most people think. this is aggravated by the fact that many men are not very much in touch with their bodies. the body can be a bewildering “machine” that does not look like all those hunks a man sees in the magazines. yes, men experience the same problem as women with comparing themselves with ridiculous ideals in the media. when the comparison falls short, disgust can follow very easily.

physical problems
it’s well-known that men’s life expectancy is shorter than women’s. one of the reasons for that is said to be their smaller emotional support system. so the social isolation that typically comes with binge eating can exacerbate problems. some of it is very straightforward: one problem with social isolation is a dislike for seeing doctors, a well-known problem among men.

now that i’ve named some of the problems – what are the solutions? i’ll write about that in the next few weeks. but in the meantime, if you’d like to have a man’s take on it, head on over to the weight loss dude, patrick curl and fat man unleashed, who are taking you along to his personal journey to health.

13 thoughts on “men and obesity

  1. Steve Meade

    Regardless of what people use for weight loss/weight gain, if they don’t have strong habits that make them exercise and eat right daily, they’ll never lose weight permanently.

    That’s why I love hypnosis – it creates – at the subconscious level – those positive daily habits to help one succeed

  2. Steve Meade

    Regardless of what people use for weight loss/weight gain, if they don’t have strong habits that make them exercise and eat right daily, they’ll never lose weight permanently.

    That’s why I love hypnosis – it creates – at the subconscious level – those positive daily habits to help one succeed

  3. isabella mori

    you’re right, it’s all about creating and maintaining habits (routines/discipline/groove/practice – whatever you want to call it).

    and both of those are driven by motivation. hypnosis is definitely one of the ways to create or enhance the motivation.

  4. isabella mori

    you’re right, it’s all about creating and maintaining habits (routines/discipline/groove/practice – whatever you want to call it).

    and both of those are driven by motivation. hypnosis is definitely one of the ways to create or enhance the motivation.

  5. Tee

    Isabella – I absolutely agree with you about creating and maintaining habits. Diets simply don’t work, unless it’s a full-on lifestyle change. That’s what did it for me. I had tried Slim-Fast many years ago, stuck with it for a few months, and lost weight. Then I went on a vacation and figured “I’ll eat what I want and then go back to it.” When I tried to get back on it, I realized just how nasty it tasted, and the weight came right back on as I went back to my old ways.
    Years later, I got into a standard treadmill/hiking/martial arts routine while being more careful about what I ate. Progress was slower, but the pounds have come off and stayed off.

    Tee’s last blog post..Extra Pounds = Extra Trouble

  6. Tee

    Isabella – I absolutely agree with you about creating and maintaining habits. Diets simply don’t work, unless it’s a full-on lifestyle change. That’s what did it for me. I had tried Slim-Fast many years ago, stuck with it for a few months, and lost weight. Then I went on a vacation and figured “I’ll eat what I want and then go back to it.” When I tried to get back on it, I realized just how nasty it tasted, and the weight came right back on as I went back to my old ways.
    Years later, I got into a standard treadmill/hiking/martial arts routine while being more careful about what I ate. Progress was slower, but the pounds have come off and stayed off.

    Tee’s last blog post..Extra Pounds = Extra Trouble

  7. EuroMillions Lotto

    Interesting thread, only lost weight in past year and can relate to some of what’s mentioned. A friend who is still as big as I used to be is often breathless while walking and keeps making comments about hoe he needs to lose weight (my weight loss seems to make him feel worse).
    Personally lost weight by reducing the amount of fat i eat, eating fruit instead and drinking milk instead of fizzy drinks. I always walk a mile or two a day but did that as well when my eating habits were worse so not much has changed.

  8. EuroMillions Lotto

    Interesting thread, only lost weight in past year and can relate to some of what’s mentioned. A friend who is still as big as I used to be is often breathless while walking and keeps making comments about hoe he needs to lose weight (my weight loss seems to make him feel worse).
    Personally lost weight by reducing the amount of fat i eat, eating fruit instead and drinking milk instead of fizzy drinks. I always walk a mile or two a day but did that as well when my eating habits were worse so not much has changed.

  9. Myst

    Hi!

    I have just found your blog somehow!
    Just wondering if you know of any relationship between neophobia as a child and obesity as a teenager – especially in boys/young men?

    G
    xx

    Myst’s last blog post..MeMe – Me?

  10. Myst

    Hi!

    I have just found your blog somehow!
    Just wondering if you know of any relationship between neophobia as a child and obesity as a teenager – especially in boys/young men?

    G
    xx

    Myst’s last blog post..MeMe – Me?

  11. medical suppliers

    I had a proper diet without any disease but then I diagnosed Diabetes. I think we can’t live without proper exercise and workouts. As soon as we grew, we have certain changed in our body. If we are not going to adjust our life with it, we are going to have some serious problems.

  12. Marc H

    Several of the characteristics I have seen first-hand in myself!!! I am a fromer football player who has struggled to keep myself in eating patterns that are totally different than what we were taught in college (horading, eating late at night, high carb load, etc.)…As I get older, the weight seems twice as hard to keep off, and the eating patterns became much worse…Tough to be the addiction!!! Many things now (age 42) become very important to keep the weight off (health insurance, life insurance, etc.) and gives you extra motiviation to put the plate down!!!

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