Losing Weight Not All Fun and Games

Diana Crawford
NewsChannel 10

Amarillo, Texas - With a new year just a few days away, many people are resolving to lose weight. But, there can be a dark side to this process.

Whether you've gained a few pounds from the holidays or you've battled weight gain your entire life, most will agree that losing weight is a challenge, one that can sometimes take people down the wrong path.

Eating disorders, insomnia, depression, and anxiety are just some things that can take a toll, says behavioral counselor Joe Barton.

He says many times people gain weight in the first place because they are using food as a way to deal with life stresses. Barton explains, "You can see what we term transfer addiction. A lot of times people focus on food to deal with all these issues and when they give that up, they start to turn to other things: drugs, alcohol, medication, they can get into promiscuous behaviors, and different things like this. They're not dealing with the emotional content of the weight. And so now that they've given up the food as a coping mechanism, they develop some unhealthy coping mechanisms.

Barton's top suggestion- stay off the scale when trying to lose weight so your focus is not on a number, but on being healthy. He says to include a medical professional in your weight loss journey. Barton says the key to weight loss is ultimately being healthy and not developing an obsession.