Depression can affect both your mental as well as physical health. Some of the symptoms of depression are lack of interest in previously enjoyed activities, persistent sadness, sleeping problems, appetite changes, lack of energy, suicidal thoughts and significant weight gain or weight loss. Your weight does get affected by your mood. Weight management issues are directly linked to depression.
Depression can make you overeat or curtail your appetite. Many people suffering from depression suffer from weight gain, whereas others experience weight loss. But why are weight issues and depression intertwined? What is the link between depression and weight loss/weight gain. The part of the brain that controls our emotions also affects our appetite.
So, this emotional part in a person suffering from depression gets disturbed and takes a toll on the appetite. Another culprit for weight related issues, both weight gain and weight loss are antidepressants used to treat depression. Depression also affects your sleeping and eating patterns.
Relation between Depression & weight gain
Different types of depression symptoms can decide whether you gain or lose pounds. It is more common to gain weight due to depression than to lose it. Obesity and depression are interconnected. Depression makes people become obese and develop life threatening diseases like diabetes and heart problems. There are a lot of reasons which contribute to weight gain in depressed people.
A depressed person may not feel motivated to exercise or do any physical activity and consume more high calorie and sugary foods leading to weight gain. Some people with heavy body weights suffer from low self-esteem as they feel conscious about themselves and their physical appearance. This makes them feel blue and worthless and increases the feelings of depression.
A person who has depression is susceptible to becoming obese and the person who is obese is at an heightened risk of becoming depressed. Researchers have acknowledged the fact that weight gain and depression go hand in hand.
Relation with Weight Loss
As per a study if your sleep is disturbed as a result of depression then you may lose weight despite eating a lot. This is due to the reason that our body burns more calories while waking than sleeping. So, the extra calories which the body will burn will lead to calorie deficit, which causes weight loss. Weight loss can also have an adverse effect on your heart, and fertility and make you feel tired.
It is also believed that certain antidepressants taken to improve moods can contribute to weight loss in older adults. But nothing so far has been proven now to validate this claim. Some of the medications taken to treat depression can also cause diarrhea, anxiety and insomnia.
Diarrhea can make you lose weight as your body will not be able to absorb the nutrients from the food consumed. Anxiety and nervousness will cause you to burn more calories and therefore lead to weight loss.
So, if any of your family member or a friend experiences sudden weight loss or weight gain, they could be suffering from depression and need medical help. It is also possible that depression could be concealing the symptoms of some other health problems causing weight issues.