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Published On: Sun, Oct 12th, 2014

What overeating does to your body

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If you find yourself eating at times when you’re not even hungry, you’re not alone—almost 60 percent of Canadian adults are now overweight or obese and overeating is the number one cause , says Richard Béliveau, chair for cancer prevention nd treatment at the University of Quebec in Montreal and author of Eating Well, Living Well (McClelland & Stewart).

“Forget about all the diets and the stupidity written about sugar, fat and protein,” he says. “If you gain weight it’s because you’re eating too many calories compared to what you’re burning.”

Sounds simple enough, yet many of us continue to consume more calories than we need. Here are some consequences of overeating Weight gain

Unhealthy weight gain is one of the biggest dangers associated with eating too much. When you take in more calories than you’re able to burn, you’ll start packing on the pounds. In fact, a 2001 article published in “Obesity” notes that overeating is linked to obesity and people who overeat on a regular basis are less likely to get enough exercise.

That exacerbates the problem, making weight gain even more likely.

Additional physical dangers

Gaining weight isn’t the only physical complaint you’re likely to experience if ou overeat on a regular basis. If you overeat unhealthy foods, such as high-

fat fast foods or sugary desserts, you’ll get an initial rush of energy, but crash shortly after, leaving you feeling sluggish and fatigued. These unhealthy

foods can also cause uncomfortable digestive problems such as bloating and gas.

 Overeating can also lead to bone and joint pain, according to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. This occurs when you gain too much weight from overeating because the excess pounds put additional pressure on your skeleton, which can lead to pain and discomfort, particularly in the lower back and hips.

Mental health dangers Chronic overeating can impact mental health. A large portion of your self- image and self-esteem is connected to how you feel about your looks. If you’ve gained extra weight from overeating, you might not feel confident about yourself.

 Over time, this can actually lead to depression, according to Brown University. Having a negative self- image can also lead to anxiety, sexual and intimacy difficulties and an unnatural preoccupation with food and alories.

On the other hand, shedding excess weight can boost self-image and improve overall mental health.

Disease dangers The long-term dangers of overeating don’t have anything to do with your

appearance, but they can be equally as devastating.

Overeating, particularly when you overeat high-fat, high-calorie

foods, can increase your risk of heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

 When obesity is the result of overeating, you’re also at an increased risk for certain types of cancer, gallbladder disease, high cholesterol and sleep apnea. You might also develop high blood pressure, which can contribute to an elevated risk of having a stroke.

                                                                              healthyeating.sfgate.com

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