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Life After Emotional & Binge Eating

Why Are We Fat? Here are 82 Possible Causes

Group of teenagers raising their handsLooking for an answer to the question, “Why are we fatter than we want to be”? Always hoping someone will come up with a clear concise reason for obesity and then you’ll have your solution and your struggle will be over?  Get in line. Me, too! If we’re hoping for one simple explanation and corresponding cure, I’m afraid we”ll be in that line for a long time to come.

Any single reason for fatness that you or any one else proposes, i.e.,  foods have been engineered to make us want more, we eat over family conflicts or overwhelm at work, chemicals in the environment are making us fat, we’re watching too much TV and living sedentary lives in front of our computers …credible or not, the theory has likely been considered; even studied.

A colleague of mine recently drew attention to this blog post, The DOWNY Obesity Report, The Putative 82 Causes of Obesity (I’m not endorsing this guy but I think he did a great job here).

After reading his list of 82 possible causes of obesity, knowing what I know, here’s my take away. There’s more we don’t know (for sure) about what cases so many of us to be fat than what we do know for sure.

If you are losing lots of sleep over the question, “Why are we fat?”, here’s my suggestion. Stop sweating the ‘fat’ stuff!  Refocus your attention on creating and living a wonderfully, fulfilling life. Start taking better care of whatever size body you happen to have today; physically, emotionally, nutritionally, and spiritually!  In my humble and extensive experience, SELF-CARE reaps so many better rewards than SELF-LOATHING!


Ellen Shuman is an experienced Coach who specializes in helping people overcome emotional eating, compulsive eating, binge eating disorder, and food addiction. She is the founder of A Weigh Out & Acoria Binge Eating Disorder Treatment (1993-present), Past President of the Binge Eating Disorder Association (2011/2012), and Co-Founder of the Academy for Eating Disorders Special Interest Group on “Health at Every Size”, ellen@aweighout.com, 513-321-4242.

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