Romance and Weight Gain - The Love Connection

My Bariatric Life Health Guide
  • The Love Connection - Romance and Weight Gain

    Have you been having trouble lately eating or falling asleep? Does your heart race on occasion or does your breathing turn rapid? Do you have energy highs and euphoric moods that are offset by feelings of panic or anxiety?


    There is no need to consult your family physician or a psychiatrist for that matter. You may just be in love. The symptoms above indicate that you are in love and, as you grow cozy in your relationship, another symptom may present, as well. You may start to gain weight.


    Women in Relationships

    Researchers have found that women in relationships often gain weight. In a study mentioned in the New York Times, ladies who had partners with children gained an average of twenty pounds while those who had partners that did not have children gained an average of fifteen pounds. It was also discovered that men who are in relationships lose weight, especialy in the first year.

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    One explanation for weight gain among women in relationships is the social factor. People who are in relationships are more likely to go out with friends, and going out with friends often involves eating out. More calories are consumed under these conditions, and socialization can lead to engaged conversation that can lead to mindless eating. 


    Children in a relationship means cooking and household chores, both of which can be stressful. Stress often leads to snacking as a relief from tension. In addition, working moms may not be able to make it to the gym as frequently as they did when they were single.   


    Relationships in General

    Andrea Meltzer, a psychologist at Southern Methodist University, was involved in a study that found that satisfied newlyweds gain more weight in the first four years of marriage than newlyweds who are less happy. Other research has correlated marriage with weight gain and divorce with weight loss.


    Once a person decides on a partner for life, weight in terms of appearance becomes less important and people relax a bit. Those who think of weight in terms of health instead of appearance tend to gain fewer pounds. Some partners actually sabotage efforts for a healthy lifestyle because unhealthy living has become so ingrained in the relationship.


    It has also been discovered that when one partner loses weight the other may harbor resentments because they now feel nagged to lose weight themselves or they feel threatened by their partner's new self.


    The good news is that a study conducted by Lynsey Kluever Romo of North Carolina University showed that most couples reported positive changes in their realtionships after one of them lost weight including improved and more frequent sex, feeling closer to one other, and sharing more activities. The partner who did not lose weight often improved eating and exercise patterns, as well. 


    Surrendering to the change is more beneficial than resistance and just because a partner has decided to take better care of herself does not mean that she is any less invested in the relationship.       


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Published On: September 14, 2014