Learn how to stop emotional eating by following these 5 tips.
It’s not a new term anymore; we hear more about it every time, so here I bring you this 5 easy ways to respond on how to stop emotional eating.
First of all let’s define what emotional eating is:
Emotional eating is to eat in order to fill those emotional needs rather than to fill the stomach.
How can I recognize emotional eating?
You probably have noticed that you eat more when feeling stressed or maybe you’ve found yourself eating when you’re not really hungry or when feeling already full. These and the following symptoms are also signs of emotional eating:
- Eating to feel better when sad, mad or bored.
- Eating until stuffing yourself rather than just feeling satisfied or full.
- Feeling like rewarding yourself with some food
- Feeling out of control when there is food around
- Feeling safe when eating; food is your best friend.
How can I differentiate emotional hunger from physical hunger?
- Physical hunger happens gradually while emotional hunger comes in a sudden. It feels urgent.
- When feeling physically hungry your body you don’t crave anything in particular. Emotional hunger normally craves fatty or sugary foods.
- Emotional hunger leads to mindless eating; you eat it all before realizing it. Physical hunger makes you eat more aware of what you’re doing and eating.
- Emotional hunger is not satisfied once you’re full. You normally want more and more until stuffed. Physical hunger feels satisfied when stomach is full.
- Physical hunger is located in the stomach while emotional hunger is located in the senses and the head. You want to experience textures, smells and tastes in particular.
- Emotional hunger leads to afterwards feelings like regrets, shame or guilt. This does not happen with physical hunger which makes you feel good because you just gave the body what it was truly needing. Emotional eating feels guilty because deep down you know you’re not eating for nutritional purposes.
5 ways to stop emotional eating
- Identify your triggers. The most common are: stress, boredom, emptiness, childhood issues, anger, fear, sadness, anxiety, loneliness, resentment, shame, social influences. What situations, events or even people lead you to emotionally eat?
- Keep an emotional eating diary. Keep track of what you eat and what mood was leading you to eat. What were you feeling before, during and after eating? After a week you’ll be able to observe some patterns in your emotional eating.
- Feed your feelings different. It is a fact that if you don’t know how to manage your emotions, you won’t be able to manage your eating either. Look for emotional alternatives to feed your emotions:
- If you feel depressed, call someone.
- If you feel anxious, go dance, work out, take a walk.
- If you feel bored, do any activity that you enjoy doing. It can be from reading a book, watching a comedy show to many more.
- If you feel exhausted, treat yourself with a warm bath, light up some scented candles, have a calming hot tea, get in bed.
- Make a pause when cravings start. Wait for 5 minutes before running to the fridge or the convenience store. Watch your feelings and embrace them. Feel connected to the moment. Give yourself a chance to make a decision.
- Support yourself with healthy habits. When adopting a healthy lifestyle it turns difficult to cheat on it. Make daily exercise. Sleep enough. Make time for relaxation and open spaces to connect with others.
Contact me for further help
Is this information helpful? We all at any moment of the life do some emotional eating, don’t feel ashamed of it. Let’s embrace the feelings and the experience. What leads you the most to emotional eating?
Dear reader, know that I’m hear to help. Please feel free to leave all your comments and questions down in the box. If you need further assistance, do not hesitate contacting me! I’m here to help you as your Health Coach. If you’d like to know more on how I can help you, write to firstname.lastname@example.org and let’s get your first consultation with me arranged, totally free!