How Unhealthy Choices and Sugar Addiction Affected My Mental Health

Hi, my name is Stephanie and I am going to tell you how I beat my depression and how I lost 50 pounds in 7 months. First, I am going to give you some details about my life. 

The Beginning

When I was a kid, I had horrible, unhealthy eating habits. I developed a junk food/sugar addiction. Yes, I self- diagnosed myself. It’s not hard to do when you realize you consume over 4,000 calories and 300 grams of sugar a day. As a result of eating so much, I weighed close, if not over 300 pounds by the time I was 15. I had depression, bipolar, voices in my head, and more. I did go into an in-treatment program to get help with these issues, but no one ever looked into my eating habits. Doctors looked into my depression so much that I was on probably several hundreds of medications trying to figure out the right combination. During the program I was in, I lost 110 pounds and was happier. I couldn’t tell you how I did it. The only thing I can tell you is that I cut out sweets, drank water, and focused on meal portions. 

When I got out of the in-treatment program in my 20’s, life happened—all the stressors from being in bad relationships led me back to my old, unhealthy eating habits. I was right back where I started. It was not a great feeling to be close to 300 pounds again. 

At 28-years-old, I met my future husband and that is when I started thinking about my health. The first thing I changed was my canned veggies and switched to frozen or fresh instead. I didn’t realize how much of an impact that would have on my health. I started to lose weight, I was walking more, and my depression lessened. I never put two and two together before. 

The Breaking Point

I was 32 years old when I worked at a retail store that ultimately broke me. I had developed back and feet problems. I wasn’t getting the proper rest between work and home. I ended up quitting my job because my health was more important to me. When I left that job, I weighed 230 pounds at that time. Later, I worked at a gas station for a year where I could drink all the free soda I wanted. I ended up gaining 33 pounds… Something had to give. I tried diets and pills, but nothing was working. My body was telling me I can’t work retail much longer.

That is when I found health coaching. 

I really couldn’t afford it, but something in me told me to go for it. It was the best decision I ever made. I was learning about how food affects the body in so many ways. All the unhealthy eating habits and sugar I mentioned earlier were the main cause of my problems. The other factor was me. I had to work on myself to understand how and why I got here before I focused on my eating habits. 

A Slight Set-Back

In November of 2019, I couldn’t walk for a while. I was severely depressed because I thought I was losing my independence. I have always been the type of person that can’t rely on people to help me out. It was hard. My husband stepped up and took care of me. We got a knee scooter so that I could move around. We got an indoor grill so I could cook in the living room without standing for too long.

Right before Thanksgiving, I had doctors tell me there was nothing they could do for me. With my life spinning out of control, I was shocked that my weight didn’t take a hit. I was still losing weight with everything going on. Surprisingly, eating veggies got me out of that funk. I wasn’t craving chocolate or junk food. The only thing my body wanted was veggies and water. Yes, I did eat protein like chicken and turkey, but I was becoming more aware of what my body needs and wants. That is the key to success. 

The Result

When I eat lean meats, fruits, or veggies, I am treating my body like royalty and I feel better. The next time when you eat or drink anything, make sure you are eating like a royal king or queen because we all deserve health, happiness, and love. Adopting healthy eating habits can work wonders for your mental well-being too.

Written by: Stephanie Emmons

For more information or for help to achieve your health goals, please contact Stephanie, a licensed health coach, at

[email protected]

or visit her website at:

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  1. Thank you for sharing! This is definitely something I need help with.

  2. This is so important for more people to understand…

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