Depression and trying to lose weight

Anyone here suffer from depression? How do you deal with it when you're trying to be healthy?

I know that I will care about my food intake tomorrow or the next day when I shake the funk I'm in, but it's really hard to drag myself through the day caring about what I eat. Or even pretending to care. What do you do?

Also, if you don't suffer from actual depression, please don't answer this question.
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Replies

  • KameHameHaaaa
    KameHameHaaaa Posts: 838 Member
    I try to stay distracted. I lost my job and insurance in December,I started calorie counting in January and am down 87 lbs so far. The only thing that helps me is keeping busy and practicing self control. I'm no longer on any meds due to no insurance and I'm constantly battling my own thoughts.. Honestly I spend a ridiculous amount of time on this site reading anything I can get my hands on. I'm not in school but I also read all kinds of educational material...history books, math etc just to pass time. Nights are the worst for me I have extreme anxiety thinking ill die in my sleep >_< I drink a lot of hot tea at night but I try to save calories for a late night snack...

    I know ill probably always deal with depression but a big motivator for me is I don't want to be depressed AND have extreme physical problems brought on by being obese... Me, my mom, her brother and father all have degenerative disc disease....we recently found out my moms spine is collapsing and she's not even overweight... I'm almost 200 lbs heavier than her and the thought that that can eventually be me is terrifying... =\

    But yeah stay distracted take it one day at a time. Make small goals because sometimes looking at the whole picture can be daunting. Remember you're doing this for you, your mind may be at war with you but your body wants you to be the best YOU that you can be.

    Sorry for the long read. Good luck and keep on keepin on!
  • TossaBeanBag
    TossaBeanBag Posts: 458 Member
    I have learned to do disregard the feelings and just go through the motions. Most of the time it works. I also like cardio and other things that increase endorphins. If I am depressed at work, I will go to a room where I know no one will be and do squats until I get my heart rate up. I also listen to my self talk. If I am getting negative, I go exercise and continue to try to use positive talk. It's all about brain chemistry, though. I keep exercising to keep the blues away.
  • Camilleathome
    Camilleathome Posts: 99 Member
    I suffer depression as well and stress. I went a year without working and just started working again now but part time and my husband in the same boat. It can be really hard when you have to pay a light bill to keep electric on so you can work and then have no money leftover for food(Because light was threatening to cut you off). The main thing is to like everyone said. Keep yourself distracted, move past it and not dwell. Find little positive things that help you. I tend to read, I follow all of eat your kimchi crew(On youtube)'s videos and they tend to help me cheer up as well. My animals help also. I have goats and chickens and dogs and barn cats that need me so tending to them helps me feel somehow accomplished. Speaking of which im off to try trimming goat hooves by myself.
  • RodaRose
    RodaRose Posts: 9,574 Member
    edited November 2014
    Breathing techniques and some exercise help me.
    Here is a youtube for breathing that is pretty good.

    Yoga has saved my life --seriously.
    If you do not do yoga do something that gets you moving --- like a 20 mins walk.
  • floridagirl7264
    floridagirl7264 Posts: 318 Member
    I have bipolar depression and can really relate to what you are going through. I keep myself going but looking at the finish line. Too much time keeps going by and I should have had this weight off of me by now. But I do go off track. I just keep pulling myself back in the game. I don't want to be looking back next year at this time and feeling bad that I still haven't taken the weight off. I've done that too many years now. Keep pushing and keep thinking of the finish line.
  • Milvardea
    Milvardea Posts: 52
    edited November 2014
    Thank you, everyone. It is day 3 dealing with this, and I'm still continuing to go through the motions and trying to power through. It's a lot harder to get off of the couch and exercise when my emotions are dead and I don't care, but I think it is helping.

    I'm going to do (not try, but do, like Yoda says) some gentle yoga tonight, and see if that will help me sleep. Once I get back on track with my sleep, my food, and my exercise, I'm really hoping it will re-balance the chemicals in my brain and I'll be able to feel something again.

    Please wish me luck; I'm really struggling. I think the hardest part is knowing I will care next week, and I don't want to disappoint my-other-self-that-still-cares when she comes back.

    As an atheist, I don't ask for prayers but mental hugs instead, if you can spare them.

    Thank you, friends, for the advice. I hope the endorphin shot from yoga tonight pulls me out of my depression. If not, I'll try again tomorrow. And the next day, and the next day...

    Go through the motions, go through the motions, keep it up...

    It's also super nice to know it's not just me.
  • janhiness
    janhiness Posts: 32 Member
    Ive been at this steady for about two months. It used to be a struggle to get out of the house some days. One day I decided to try something crazy and go low carb. My life has been changed. I know this will sound silly but I haven't been depressed and I've even stopped smoking without trying I just don't crave it anymore. If you don't want to go low carb I'd suggest weight training before I started low carb that's the one exercise yoga didn't work for me that made me feel better. My best friend has even started low carb with me and she seems more stable and focused than ever before. You can do it.
  • _FATNSASSY
    _FATNSASSY Posts: 107 Member
    It's been months... no motivation, sometimes I hover in MFP, but cant seem to come down for a landing. :(
  • _FATNSASSY wrote: »
    It's been months... no motivation, sometimes I hover in MFP, but cant seem to come down for a landing. :(

    Good luck to you, friend. I hope you find some kind of motivation to keep going.
  • AmandaAnne307
    AmandaAnne307 Posts: 114 Member
    I struggle with depression too - I'm on medication, so it's pretty stable. I still have days that I don't want to do anything! So I crochet - keep my hands moving and keep counting the stiches so I don't focus on how much everything sucks.
    Good luck - there is always some good that comes after the bad! Just keep breathing.
  • Adpalangi
    Adpalangi Posts: 349 Member
    Milvardea wrote: »
    Thank you, everyone. It is day 3 dealing with this, and I'm still continuing to go through the motions and trying to power through. It's a lot harder to get off of the couch and exercise when my emotions are dead and I don't care, but I think it is helping.

    I'm going to do (not try, but do, like Yoda says) some gentle yoga tonight, and see if that will help me sleep. Once I get back on track with my sleep, my food, and my exercise, I'm really hoping it will re-balance the chemicals in my brain and I'll be able to feel something again.

    Please wish me luck; I'm really struggling. I think the hardest part is knowing I will care next week, and I don't want to disappoint my-other-self-that-still-cares when she comes back.

    As an atheist, I don't ask for prayers but mental hugs instead, if you can spare them.

    Thank you, friends, for the advice. I hope the endorphin shot from yoga tonight pulls me out of my depression. If not, I'll try again tomorrow. And the next day, and the next day...

    Go through the motions, go through the motions, keep it up...

    It's also super nice to know it's not just me.

    Hi! I have suffered and struggled with depression for over 20 yrs.The last 5 years I have been in an acute depression with bipolar. I mean so depressed I've had many hospital stays, ECT treatments and about any anti depression drug out there, along with mood stabilizers, medication to deal with the side affects of one of my meds, and then the adderal for focusing, and keeping myself less exhausted (something like that). I see the same therapist on the same day and time each week, there is help out there other than just meds. Therapist has been working with me on my cognitive skills. And then once a month I see my psychologist to adjusting meds, she's got them down pretty much by now, just afew tweaks here and there. One thing I was wondering, had you been diagnosed with depression? What seems strange to me and I may be very wrong. But I have picked up a lot of information as the years have gone by. But I believe you said something about your depression coming back or going away (something like that) but from what I understand, you can't just stop the depression here and there, and especially not in a day. From what I have read it would be like a definite amount if weeks of symptoms do not disappear. I can't seem to word that correctly, hopefully it makes sense. Glad to hear your sticking with it!
  • Milvardea wrote: »
    I know that I will care about my food intake tomorrow or the next day when I shake the funk I'm in, but it's really hard to drag myself through the day caring about what I eat. Or even pretending to care.

    Just like when you start any new habit - the first few days are always hard. Now with depression - due to the changes it makes in your motivation, attention, behavior, sleep, appetite, perception, relationships, etc. - it's not precisely the same as somebody else would experience it, and i'm not going to neglect that. However, trying to pull motivation and positivity in your life may be helpful, if you haven't already. Maybe bring lunches with you if you feel as though you may lose motivation later in the day, or if you feel as though it would become a problem throughout the week, if you have one day a week you could dedicate that day to cooking and freeze some of the meals - only to bring along with you/to eat - the day that you decide to have them. Planning ahead sometimes helps people, but sometimes it can be detrimental, so that all really depends on how good your relationship with food is.

    I hate to be that cliche person, but if you have the resources to see doctors, see if you can see a CBT therapist! They tend to help a lot with depression and if you and/or any doctors you see feel as though medications may help, give them a try. If you don't have the resources for those sorts of things, focusing a lot to live the healthiest lifestyle you can (again i know easier said than done) can make a huge difference when you struggle with depression. Trying to make sure you practice good sleep hygiene while also sleeping enough, making sure you focus on surrounding yourself with positive influences and relationships as opposed to ones that make you feel anything less than fricking amazing, etc. If CBT therapy doesn't try, then try DBT or EMDR or object-relations or whatever the heck ends up helping you in a way that helps you to get back on a track to living the healthiest lifestyle that you can.

    You should also look for groups on here - sometimes there are groups for people with depression you can join, so you would have a forum to specifically talk with people about! I'm not saying by any means that you're not welcome here, but if you want a more intimate and personal setting - as opposed to the forums - that's worth checking out. I know i've seen a few groups of that nature floating around, so they do exist!

    Even if you don't do DBT therapy, do see if you can use the skills for your eating habits. The DBT program tends to use the terminology 'eating disorder' merely because programs of that nature attract high risk clients and those with ed's, but that doesn't mean those skills can't be used for any detrimental behavior. Find yourself a diary card (or app if you have a smart phone), record your emotions accordingly on the chart, and start to use mindfulness to be more aware and present with your eating habits. It actually regulates your nervous system a bit, which is why it's such an integral part of meditation. :)

    <3 Best of luck, and i hope you feel better soon!
  • ASG_21
    ASG_21 Posts: 82 Member
    I do suffer from depression, and for me it's also very difficult to care what I do or don't do/eat or don't eat when I'm depressed. One thing that I've found to be helpful is keeping healthy food convenient. This helps me out because I don't want to cook or go out or get food ready when I'm depressed, so if my freezer is full of chili, soup, baked falafel, etc, it's much easier to just grab that than anything else; basically using my depression to my advantage.

    If I do go out for dinner, you can be sure that I'd blow my calorie budget sky-high because I don't care enough to make a healthy choice, and if I had a cupboard full of snacks I'd probably eat those instead of making anything.

    As for exercise, I'm still trying to get that down; it's a vicious cycle when depressed because exercise can help, but you don't feel like doing it, so you continue to stay depressed or feel worse. Pushing through and doing it would probably be helpful, but I personally haven't been able to force myself to do that yet.

    All the best!
  • ASG_21
    ASG_21 Posts: 82 Member
    Adpalangi wrote: »
    Hi! I have suffered and struggled with depression for over 20 yrs.The last 5 years I have been in an acute depression with bipolar. I mean so depressed I've had many hospital stays, ECT treatments and about any anti depression drug out there, along with mood stabilizers, medication to deal with the side affects of one of my meds, and then the adderal for focusing, and keeping myself less exhausted (something like that). I see the same therapist on the same day and time each week, there is help out there other than just meds. Therapist has been working with me on my cognitive skills. And then once a month I see my psychologist to adjusting meds, she's got them down pretty much by now, just afew tweaks here and there. One thing I was wondering, had you been diagnosed with depression? What seems strange to me and I may be very wrong. But I have picked up a lot of information as the years have gone by. But I believe you said something about your depression coming back or going away (something like that) but from what I understand, you can't just stop the depression here and there, and especially not in a day. From what I have read it would be like a definite amount if weeks of symptoms do not disappear. I can't seem to word that correctly, hopefully it makes sense. Glad to hear your sticking with it!

    Maybe she's more like me. :) I suffer from rather mild constant depression, with occasional bouts of much deeper depression that tends to come and go. For me, a very small happenstance can sometimes be enough to send me spiraling down into that deeper depression for a while, then it lets up for a while again.
  • One thing I was wondering, had you been diagnosed with depression? What seems strange to me and I may be very wrong. But I have picked up a lot of information as the years have gone by. But I believe you said something about your depression coming back or going away (something like that) but from what I understand, you can't just stop the depression here and there, and especially not in a day. From what I have read it would be like a definite amount if weeks of symptoms do not disappear. I can't seem to word that correctly, hopefully it makes sense. Glad to hear your sticking with it!

    People do tend to experience depression rather differently, depending upon their personality and such. I have a close friend whose depression manifests as really aggressive rage and hostility, and another friend who experiences text-book-case anhedonia. They're both depression though, and one isn't more valid than the other - even when considering the fact that my close friend has those outbursts at random and they're not consistent, 24/7.

    Also - people aren't always in touch with their emotions. So people can be experiencing depression - think that they're feeling better when in reality they merely experienced a good minute or two because something went right, if that made sense?

    Now, if you're talking about the DSM-5 diagnostics, i know for a fact that most of those do tend to have length/frequency/duration/etc data associated with them. I don't have my DSM on me and the criteria isn't online yet since it's still so new, but i'll take a look! :)
  • RyanMatthewHarrell
    RyanMatthewHarrell Posts: 267
    edited November 2014
    I guess everything you might think of has been covered already but I'll share my story if it helps anyone.

    Like many of the people that have already posted here my depression has been a lifelong affliction. It became most prominent after an episode where I experienced a fugue state (I "came to" a day later in a completely different city) and was prescribed Zoloft by a psychiatrist. I was 16 at the time and as most competent psychiatrists can tell you, you generally do not prescribe an SSRI to someone underage. It had an inverse effect and within a month I was hospitalised, well Baker Acted, on a suicide attempt and made another attempt while I was in the facility. I consider this to be the true beginning of my history with depression, although I was depressed for many many years prior to that.

    Since then, again like many others here; I have been a regular self injurer, I have made multiple attempts on my life several of which have landed me in ICU, I have delved to the depths of drug abuse, I have done so many terrible things to myself (some that I won't mention here because I don't feel they would be well received) that I am now a shell of the man I used to be. I have been on more medications than I can even remember, some of which turned me into a complete zombie completely incapable of even holding small objects like a phone or a pencil.

    Today, every second of every day if my mind is not completely occupied by something else I am thinking about suicide. My mood comes and goes but that thanatos is constantly hounding me, like some kind of monster completely outside of my influence. I beg for it to stop but there's no one to beg to but myself, or I suppose God(s) if you are a believer of any kind. Even as I sit here typing and breaking off to consider what to write next I hear the nag of that thought tugging at the edges of my mind. How do you escape a beast which exists only in your mind?

    How has this affected my physical health? Well mostly it's resulted in a severe yo-yoing with my weight. Some of the medications completely take away your appetite. I was on a combination of Wellbutrin and Adderall at one point and immediately after starting the combination I didn't eat anything for a solid week. For no other reason than because I wasn't hungry. I eventually had to force myself to eat even though I wasn't hungry. The biggest problem is that besides the inhibitions that my physical size put on my ability to work out, I just didn't care enough to. It didn't matter to me. Nothing did. If I'm being honest with myself nothing does still, but as long as I'm here on this Earth I will keep trying my best. One day I wholeheartedly believe I will put the pistol to my head so to speak and say goodbye to this world, until then I continue to wear my mask and fear the beast within.

    tl;dr Lie to yourself.
  • gertudejekyl
    gertudejekyl Posts: 385 Member
    jbach2 wrote: »
    I have learned to do disregard the feelings and just go through the motions. Most of the time it works. I also like cardio and other things that increase endorphins. If I am depressed at work, I will go to a room where I know no one will be and do squats until I get my heart rate up. I also listen to my self talk. If I am getting negative, I go exercise and continue to try to use positive talk. It's all about brain chemistry, though. I keep exercising to keep the blues away.

    Good
  • kdeaux1959
    kdeaux1959 Posts: 2,675 Member
    Exercise has been shown to help release endorphins which will, in turn, in turn help elevate one's mood. The problem, of course, becomes to get enough out of the funk to get out and exercise. I do find that when I do break through and do that, my mood tends to improve when I am in a down cycle. Sometimes, you just have to "do it"... I know that is easier said than done sometimes but when we press through, it can truly help. Also, remember, talking to your doctor is a good thing when you simply cannot press through the funk... It is a good sign that your medication is not working for you to the degree that it should... Best wishes in your success....

    I also find, that mood can be enhanced by weight loss and eating right. Sugar has a major down side (crash) so if you can limit that, sometimes that may help your mood in the long run.
  • Black_Cats_Rule
    Black_Cats_Rule Posts: 7 Member
    I have depression & anxiety. Low carb really helps regulate my moods and it helps me control my emotional eating. Also if I have a binge or a bad few days I log it. I log everything. I try not to get down on myself anymore and leave MFP I just am neutral about it and keep going. Friend me if you like :)
  • joanna_82
    joanna_82 Posts: 151 Member
    Well- probably the best comment I can give is that a healthy diet without lots of junk food highs and lows helps my depression and anxiety a LOT. Also, for me, since my depression comes from chronic low self esteem, sticking to something makes me feel good, so I tell myself I need to keep going.
    I also make a list of reasons why I'm sticking to a healthy diet and look at that if I'm tempted to throw in the towel and give up.
    Also, sometimes its ok to have a day off- but you need to be clear that the next day you start afresh and try again the next day.
    Its about self motivation, finding reasons to try and taking life one day at a time is all you can do.