Negative Effects of Over Eating

Negative Effects of Over Eatingbanner

Overeating is a clinical disorder where someone feels compelled to eat when they are not hungry. Food is one of the basic necessities for life. The food we take helps in growth of the body, be energetic all through the day and develop resistance against diseases. Significantly, eating healthy food assures a healthy life, while having unhealthy foods (especially junk foods) and overeating leads to ill-health and irreversible health conditions.

Complications of overeating

In some, overeating is prominently seen. The reasons for their overeating may be genetic, stress and emotional swings like anger, sadness, distress, disappointment and betrayal. Dieting and sometimes fasting are suggested to people who are overeating. The fall-out of overeating is evident as,

  • Weight gain and obesity:

When you eat more than what is required by the body, it leads to a condition where the body has to work more to digest the food, and store the excess energy and fats for later use. Accumulation of more fat in the body leads to weight gain and obesity.

Negative Effects of Over Eating1

  • Low self-esteem and self-confidence:

People who are obese due to overeating suffer from low self-esteem and self-confidence. Obese people are subjected to uninvited gaze and ridicule. This often makes them withdraw from people and social gatherings.

  • Excessive attachment to food:

Over-eating becomes a part of your routine. There develops an insatiable craving for eating, as you keep munching something during all times of the day. As you are obsessed with eating, your relationship with your friends, family members and relatives is totally affected.

  • Junk food leads to many health disorders:

Consuming excessive amounts of junk food can lead to a variety of health problems. Junk foods are high in fat and calorie content, and taking more junk food leads to health disorders and ailments. Junk food causes severe damage to the digestive system. There is also a serious spike in blood sugar and cholesterol.  

Junk food is high in calories, unhealthy fats, sugars, and sodium and low in important nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and fibre. This can lead to food addiction symptoms like weight gain and obesity, which in turn can increase the risk of health problems such as heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and certain cancers. Additionally, junk food can cause damage to the digestive system by disrupting the balance of healthy bacteria in the gut, leading to conditions like bloating, constipation, and diarrhoea. Also, a high intake of saturated and trans fats found in junk food can increase cholesterol levels and lead to the development of cardiovascular disease.

Organ malfunction:

Overeating causes a disease called binge eating disorder which leads to excess burden on different organs of the body. Kidneys, liver and stomach have to work more than their capacity. This condition leads to decreased function of organs, and in some cases may lead to organ malfunction.

The liver is responsible for processing and metabolising the nutrients in the food we eat. When we overeat, the liver has to work harder to process the excess nutrients, which can lead to the accumulation of fat in the liver. This can eventually lead to a condition known as non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, which can cause liver damage and even liver failure.

Overeating disorders can also have a negative impact on the kidneys. The kidneys are responsible for filtering waste and toxins from the blood, but when we overeat, the kidneys have to work harder to eliminate the excess waste products produced by the excess food. Over time, this increased workload can lead to decreased kidney function and even kidney damage.

In some cases, if the stomach is unable to process the excess food, it can lead to a condition called gastroparesis, which is characterised by delayed gastric emptying. This can cause nausea, vomiting, and other gastrointestinal symptoms. In severe cases, gastroparesis can lead to malnutrition and dehydration.

Overeating symptoms

Initial symptoms of overeating are bad mouth, body odour, increased acidity and reflux disease. Overeating may also lead to lack of concentration, no focus and loss of memory. In some, the oil levels of the skin are affected leading to acne and others. Overeating can also lead to a range of symptoms, including:

  • Feeling uncomfortably full: Overeating can cause discomfort in your stomach, making you feel bloated and uneasy.
  • Nausea: Consuming too much food can lead to feeling nauseous or even vomiting.
  • Heartburn: Overeating can cause stomach acid to flow back into the oesophagus, leading to heartburn.
  • Diarrhoea or constipation: Overeating can also affect bowel movements, leading to either diarrhoea or constipation.
  • Fatigue: Digesting large amounts of food can be tiring for your body, making you feel sluggish and fatigued.

Negative Effects of Over Eating2


  • Increased thirst: Overeating can cause your body to become dehydrated, leading to an increased sense of thirst.
  • Weight gain: Overeating can lead to consuming excess calories, which can cause weight gain over time.
  • Insomnia: Eating large meals close to bedtime can cause difficulty falling asleep, leading to insomnia.

The fall-out is disastrous with the requirement for immediate medical attention and treatment by a team of specialists, including gastroenterologists, cardiologists, nephrologists, general medicine doctors and dieticians.

Overeating treatment

You can cope with overeating by making healthy lifestyle changes. Availing regular health check-ups for monitoring body-mass index (BMI), eating in moderation and having a low carb diet, avoiding junk food, giving up smoking and drinking and a regular exercise schedule goes a long way to control overeating. The treatment of overeating involves a combination of lifestyle changes, behaviour modification, and sometimes medical intervention. Here are some options that can help:

  • Make dietary changes: Adopting a balanced and healthy diet with plenty of fibre, fruits, and vegetables can help reduce cravings and prevent overeating.
  • Exercise regularly: Regular physical activity can help regulate appetite and reduce the risk of overeating.
  • Practice mindfulness: Being mindful of your eating habits, such as eating slowly and paying attention to your body’s signals, can help prevent overeating.
  • Seek support: Joining a support group or seeking professional counselling can help you improve mental health in order to develop healthy eating habits and overcome overeating.
  • Consider medication: In some cases, medication may be prescribed to help manage appetite and reduce cravings.
  • Treat underlying conditions: Overeating can sometimes be a symptom of an underlying condition such as anxiety, depression, or binge eating disorder. Treating these conditions can help prevent overeating.

Overeating is not just a physical condition; it can also take a toll on an individual’s emotional health. It can lead to feelings of guilt, shame, and embarrassment, which can further worsen the problem. If you are struggling with overeating, please know that you are not alone. Seeking help is a brave and important step towards healing.

By making positive changes to your lifestyle and seeking the right support, you can overcome this disorder and achieve a healthier and happier life. Be kind to yourself, take it one day at a time, and celebrate every small victory along the way. You are worthy of love and respect, no matter what size you are. Together, let’s break the stigma around overeating and support each other on the journey to recovery.

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