I am the worst culprit when it comes to emotional eating. I used to eat when I was bored, sad, happy, you name it. Other times I would eat because I was simply in close proximity to the refrigerator even though I just opened it 20 seconds ago! I know a lot of people can relate with me on this one so I figured I would give some helpful tips on how to stop emotional eating.
As I Am Writing This… I Am Wondering What Is In The Refrigerator???
This kind of eating is often known as emotional eating and can be extremely hard to break when trying to lose fat. Let’s be honest… life happens and we tend to turn to food as a source of comfort. Although it may sound normal for people to do this, it can slowly catch up with you and develop into a bad case of compulsive overeating disorder. People do NOT gain a lot of weight overnight. One stressful year not handled correctly can cause someone to gain more than 50 lbs without them even realizing it.
Here’s How To Tell If Your Body Really Needs Food
Real Hunger: 1)It grows gradually 2) You’ll eat anything 3) Food can wait 4)You stop eating when you are full 5) You feel good after eating 6) You feel energized
Emotional Hunger: 1) Hits suddenly 2) You crave a specific food (usually high in fat or sugar) 3) Needs to be satisfied NOW! 4) No amount of food fills you 5) You feel guilty after stuffing your face 6) You feel heavy and bloated
I battle with emotional eating all the time. I am not going to sit here and try and say that it never happens, but I do something proactive when it rears its ugly head. Here is a few ways I keep myself on track.
You Have No One To Blame
1) Own up to the fact that, if left unchecked, emotional eating will lead to serious weight problems! There is no way around it! Simply put, emotional eating is the number one saboteur of weight management. Because everyone at one time or another has used food as a coping mechanism, it is important to understand that emotional eating is a very real problem. Whether you eat to avoid boredom and loneliness or to medicate stress and anxiety, here are the key steps to defeat emotional eating:
A) Connect your weight, self-image and eating patterns to the quality of your life
B) Commit to exercise, healthy eating habits and change in perception
C) Choose not to wear you pain (e.g. unwanted pounds).
2) Find an appropriate outlet for your stress, instead of eating. This can include anything from taking a brisk walk (This is my holy grail) , journaling, running in place, squeezing a stress ball, or lifting weights. Depending on your lifestyle, you can choose the stress buster that works best for your needs. If you already keep a daily journal, it is important to focus on what you are thinking and feeling during moments of great stress. It is also very important to make observations about food cravings. These observations will identify your triggers as well as your drug of choice–the “comfort food” you typically desire.
3) Give a reason to keep your fat loss goals in mind that drives you to stay in the best shape of your life….. like looking good for a dream cruise/beach vacation, high school class reunion, etc..
Note: There are plenty of “how to stop emotional eating” tips on the net but I have found these to work exceptionally well. You are addressing the in’s and out’s of the root cause of unnecessary eating. If you still can’t crack the problem, there is more than likely a deep root to the cause of your eating habits. You may have considered yourself as a likely candidate to have a compulsive overeating disorder, but I found that there is more to the equation. I highly suggest reading a post I wrote called “The Phase One Diet: The Only Proven Antifungal Diet To Combat Both Disease And Weight Gain” as well as “Is There A Fungus Link To Weight Loss“