Break Free From Emotional Eating

Experts believe that up to 75% of overeating may be due to reasons other than physical

hunger. If you want to improve your relationship with food, learn to identify and control

emotional eating.

Recognize the Signs

1. Understand how emotional eating works. Emotional eating occurs when you

use food to manage your feelings, rather than to satisfy your hunger. This

can trigger guilt and create a cycle where you eat because you feel bad and feel bad

because you eat. Positive feelings can also play a role if you associate food with


2. Keep a balanced perspective. It’s okay to take pleasure in food and enjoy sharing it

with others. Concerns arise only when emotional eating interferes with your health and

well being.

3. Ask yourself if you feel out of control. You may have lost control of your

eating habits if you want to make healthier choices but keep backsliding. Be

honest with yourself if you resolve to have yogurt for breakfast but wind up stopping

off for a bacon sandwich on the way to work.

4. Notice your cravings. A strong desire for specific dishes is a common symptom of

emotional eating. If you’re actually hungry, everything on the menu is likely to sound

appealing. When you’re depressed over a recent breakup, ice cream may be the only

thing you want to order.

5. Evaluate your hunger levels. Another danger sign is eating when you already feel

full. Slow down and decide if you really need another helping of mashed potatoes.

6. Consider your family history. The way you eat may be grounded in patterns that

started in childhood. Maybe you were rewarded with a homemade cake when you got

good grades.

Develop a Healthier Relationship With Food

1. Keep a journal. It’s easier to spot patterns when you write down when and why you

eat. You may notice that you snack on potato chips when you’re bored, even though

you’ve just eaten a full meal.

2. Substitute healthy foods. Cravings can be used to benefit you if you reach

for nutritious alternatives. Homemade pita triangles dipped in olive oil can replace

French fries with ketchup. Indulge in fresh fruit when you want dessert.

3. Control portion sizes. Eliminating all your favorite treats can cause a backlash from

deprivation. See if a sliver of pie makes you just as happy as a big slice and savor

every bite.

4. Seek distractions. Engage in productive activities that will take your mind off your

stomach. Go for a walk, read a book, or do some housework.

5. Develop positive coping techniques. Comfort foods deliver only short-term relief.

Find more effective methods for managing daily stress, such as meditation,

music or physical exercise.

6. Avoid temptation. If you find your favorite cookies to be too irresistible, banish

them from your pantry. Choose restaurants that specialize in grilled fish if you have

trouble declining fried chicken.

7. Get adequate sleep. Being chronically tired makes you more vulnerable to

overeating. Aim for 8 hours of sleep every night. Take a warm bath before bed to

raise your body temperature if you have trouble falling asleep.

8. Reward your good behavior. Reinforce the positive changes you make in your

behavior. Set realistic goals and praise yourself when you attain them. Buy yourself

something special or visit your favorite museum.

9. Seek professional help. If you need more help to change the way you eat, talk

with an expert. Counseling may clarify the underlying issues you need to address.

Nutritionists can advise you on a diet that will work with your individual lifestyle.

Liberate yourself from emotional eating so you can protect your health and

enjoy your food more. These methods will help put you back in control.

Weight-Management University is HERE! Learn more about the Self Guided Educational Course that will teach you what you need to know to make exercise and nutrition a part of your healthy lifestyle for a permanent weight management solution.

If you live in the Gilbert area, treat yourself  right by calling or emailing today to get started on an exercise program that will change your  life for the best.

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