Q. I’d like to do a better job of managing my weight this year and there must be something my brain can do to help. Please list some factors that might contribute to mismanaging one’s weight.

A. Potentially the list of factors is endless, because the reasons a person mismanages his/her weight ongoing are as unique as the person’s brain. Nevertheless, here are some factors to consider:

  1. Loneliness - and the person is using food to alter the brain’s chemical stew in order to feel better

  2. Dehydration with a lack of adequate water intake - so the individual eats when actually the brain/body is thirsty

  3. Habits of snacking between meals or in the evening - and this increases the person’s over-all caloric intake for the day

  4. Eating too fast and not chewing food well - so the individual ends up ingesting many more calories than are needed before the brain gets the signal of feeling full

  5. A kinesthetic sensory preference - and the person obtains rewards through food taste and odors

  6. Unmanaged emotions and feelings - and the individual is eating to self-medicate the brain’s chemical stew

  7. Living inauthentically - and because of not managing brain energy effectively, the brain is exhausted and screams for glucose, so the person eats (usually high-fat and high-sugar snack-type foods)

  8. Bored - and so the individual eats for something to do

  9. Unable or unwilling to obtain needed physical exercise - so the person burns too few calories compared to the number ingested every day

  10. A history of physical or sexual abuse - and at some level the individual wants “protective padding” in adulthood