Richard G. Petty, MD

There's More to Weight Than Meets the Eye

There’s an interesting article about the associations between obesity and mental illness.

We’ve all become so used to people telling us about the physical consequences of carrying extra weight, so it is interesting to learn that obesity may also be associated with higher rates of mental illness.

We have here a typical chicken and egg problem.

Do people become depressed because they are overweight, or does depression and its treatments cause obesity?

The answer is probably "Yes." It is both.

Depression may cause insulin resistance and hypercortisolemia, which may result in weight gain. But insulin resistance alters the kinetics of some of the amino acids that are the building blocks of key neurotransmitters in the brain.

And this study re-emphasizes the importance of treating the physical, psychological, social, subtle and spiritual aspects of a problem simultaneously.

If we address only one of these dimensions, people will continue to suffer needlessly.

When our clinicians see overweight people with depression or bipolar disorder, they start by treating the mood disorder, but then immediately get to work on the weight problem. And all of it is part of the five vector, or five dimensional approach to treatment: physical, psychological, social, subtle and spiritual.

If we fail to respect and work with every aspect of a person, each problem will return to make us respond appropriately.

After all, illnesses are like any other problem: sent to educate us. Not just you, but also the person to whom you went for help.

About Richard G. Petty, MD
Dr. Richard G. Petty, MD is a world-renowned authority on the brain, and his revolutionary work on human energy systems has been acclaimed around the globe. He is also an accredited specialist in internal and metabolic medicine, endocrinology, psychiatry, acupuncture and homeopathy. He has been an innovator and leader of the human potential movement for over thirty years and is also an active researcher, teacher, writer, professional speaker and broadcaster. He is the author of five books, including the groundbreaking and best selling CD series Healing, Meaning and Purpose. He has taught in over 45 countries and 48 states in the last ten years, but spends as much time as possible on his horse farm in Georgia.

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