Saturday, April 2, 2011

"Love Pounds": Why Do We Gain Weight with New Loves?

There are actual studies that show that when we are optimistic, it strengthens our immune system.  When our immune systems are strong, we have less inclination to crave unhealthy foods.  There is a very strong link between our mind, mood and body.  When we finally fall in love, we are completely optimistic about our world.  It brings us incredible joy.  Joy is the emotion we are least willing to let go of and it is an emotion that has been clinically shown to boost our immune system.  You would think that with a booted immune system your healthier body wouldn’t gain weight. 

Food is used in all cultures as a part of celebration.  It is part of an erotic and soothing experience and it enhances or feeling of joy.   Because we want to hold onto the feeling of joy we may sometimes gain some weight after coupling with another because we traditionally include food as part of the love/coupling process.  Generally, we gain a couple of pounds and nothing very serious.  Food is a part of our celebratory process and the sharing of food contributes to our feelings of love, safety and caring.  After the initial rush of the relationship, we may find ourselves returning to the gym and working together to take those few extra pounds off.

We tend to overeat in an obsessively unhealthy way to sooth the feelings of emptiness that come from being lonely.  When we fall in love, that emptiness disappears, maybe temporarily, or maybe for good.  But when it disappears, so does our impulse to obsessively eat comfort foods.  When we fall in love, we find ourselves more self-accepting.  We feel a greater sense of satisfaction through the loving eyes of another and that allows us to treat ourselves, and our bodies, with more love and respect.  This releases us from the pains of yo-yo dieting which is so disrespectful and damaging to the body.  When we are truly in love, we may actually glimpse ourselves as being loveable and worthy of love.  This does make us more accepting our bodies and ourselves, as well as, accepting of others.  As a result, we treat our bodies and ourselves better.

In general, people live longer who are involved in a committed relationship.  This is also true of people who have beloved pets.  In a couple, people look out for each other.  They remind each other to take their medication, get enough sleep, eat better diets, etc.  As a result, people in coupled relationships are healthier although they may not be as slender as they would like.

We can certainly turn any good thing into something that works against us.  It is more typical of men than women to become so comfortable in their relationship that they stop paying as much attention to their physical appearance as their female spouse.   Men are more visually stimulated and women are more emotionally stimulated.  Given that scenario, men do have a tendency to “let themselves go” some after marriage.  This is not so true for women.  Certainly there are women who seriously gain weight after marriage but that might have more to do with depression, self-loathing and loneliness than it has to do with being comfortable in the relationship. 

If somebody became so comfortable in a relationship that it led to health concerns, there would be another serious issue going on in the background.  When we are in love, we want to take care of ourselves, as well as, the object of our love and we dance a tricky balance between celebrating our love through food and wrestling with those few extra “love” pounds. 

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1 comment:

Gali Jow said...

To get adequate calories, try to consume calorie-dense foods such as peanut butter, bagels, lean red meat and dried fruit. Serve your meals on large plates to help you remember to eat more. An easy way to increase your calorie intake is to replace some of your water with sports beverages, especially when working out. A good training partner can also be very helpful in pushing you through the tough workouts you need to grow.