I've always been a bit wrapped up and I've always tried dieting. I saw a therapist, I understand why I eat, I understand how I work and yet I still can not react, to lose weight. I really want to lose weight and I do not understand why I can not do it. Isabelle, 32 years old
Psychiatrist and psychotherapist
It is true that the weight problems are particularly confusing: we have dissociated with his psychotherapist the psychological reasons that make us eat excessively, we have the motivation to lose weight, we have a method, and yet, "it" does not start, "it" does not lose weight. Or again, "it" thin, but without understanding what is happening, "it" then regrets.
The problem, often, is that "it" starts to eat, well in spite of itself, things that we do not have to eat. So, does this mean that we are struggling with something inside ourselves that is stronger than our will, that we are toxic to the food, prey to a sugar addiction and chocolate?
Certainly, in many cases, eating compulsively in excess, fatty and sweet foods, that is to say, strong in taste, can screen out uncontrollable emotions. When we need this defense system, nothing can make us give it up. But you have, apparently, explored this track with your therapist ...
However, it does not seem that you have addressed the concrete aspects of eating behavior. Often things are more prosaic: you do not eat certain foods, and they become haunting, until you crack and eat them. It is this cycle of control and loss of control that is called cognitive restriction. To get by, it is necessary to work towards a reconciliation with ALL foods, as part of a behavioral and cognitive therapy of a particular kind.
You can contact the Group of Thought on Obesity and Overweight (www.general.org) which will give you addresses of therapists in your area.
Gérard Apfeldorfer is a psychiatrist and psychotherapist