Emotional Eating – Causes And Solutions
We cannot avoid eating – our body needs it to sustain us. However, there are good foods and bad foods. Too much of the bad ones can result in gaining weight. This often happens because of emotional eating.
Emotional eating occurs often when people are feeling hurt or are under stress. To seek comfort, they look for things that won’t judge them – often unhealthy foods.
To compound the problem, eating tasty foods releases endorphins, which will make you feel better. However, if these foods are unhealthy, you are inadvertently making the problem worse.
Emotional Eating is Not Uncommon
There are a few important questions which you can ask yourself if you think you are suffering from emotional eating.
Consider whether you are under stress, recovering from a traumatic experience, and if you are struggling with other problems. If you answer “yes” to any of these, then you perhaps may be an emotional eater.
This means that you are eating for the sake of eating – and often the foods you consume will be “comfort foods”.
Typically, comfort foods are high in fat, carbohydrates and sugar. Foods such as french fries, macaroni and cheese and donuts. They may taste good – and eating them on occasions will do little harm to you long-term.
However, relying on these foods and consuming a lot of them is damaging to your health.
Acknowledge Your Emotional Eating
As with many things, admitting that you have a problem is the first step towards solving it. If you are feeling helpless or guilty, then while this may be your lowest point, you have at least recognized you have a problem. From there, you can seek out the right help and advice for recovery.
Counselling can be a worthwhile route. They might propose techniques such as visualization or relaxation. This can help you put your problems into perspective, and work out how to use food for nutrition instead of emotion.
Appropriate exercise is also helpful to improve your mental state. Yoga, for example, can improve the connection between your mind and body.
Therefore, you will only eat when you are hungry, and the risks of going on an eating binge are reduced.
Don’t be overly harsh on yourself. Many of us were subjected to food as a pacifier at an early age. If there was something that upset us as we were growing up, were given food as a way of feeling better. Comfort foods were the answer.
Unfortunately as you face tough issues as an adult, you are likely to reach for foods just like you were taught as a child. Those are strong habits you have to overcome, so cut yourself some slack. But persevere in your efforts to find another way to deal with stress.
Searching for different ways to deal with stress will open new ways for dealing with stressful issues. You will increase your self esteem when you discover your own way to banish stress from your everyday life.