The Downside Of Losing Weight

What’s your downside of losing weight?

Hmmm . . . it could be any number of things . . . most commonly the fear of having to maintain it . . .  or having to give up the foods you love . . . or the fear of unwanted attention from others.

It can certainly go deeper than that as well. Once you start digging in this area, you are likely to find something.

Having a downside isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But if you want to be successful, you’d better figure out what it is and deal with it.

Because if you don’t, you won’t lose weight. Continue reading

Stress Eating and Your Weight

Most people who engage in stress eating are highly concerned about their appearance and weight. For some people, their world is dominated by thoughts of food and weight issues. Most stress eaters want to lose weight and are anxious about gaining weight.

Obsessive concerns about food and weight are not uncommon. One client that I worked with weighed herself at least 10 times per day. Others don’t weigh themselves at all, always fearing the worst.

Shame about your appearance can interfere with day-to-day life. Some people will avoid social situations, and many avoid letting others (or even themselves) see what they look like. Avoiding others tends to increase the stress and consequently, the stress eating even more. Continue reading

Control Holiday Stress Eating and Cravings

I’m quite sure that there are carbohydrates in heaven!

But then, there won’t be any stress, so there won’t be any need for stress eating!

I once read a book by Suzanne Somers, and was quite shocked to see the line-up of supplements that she takes to control cravings for carbohydrates.

While it can seem like trying to stop a moving train, there are quite a few strategies to control cravings and stop stress eating during the holidays. Continue reading

Stress Eating and Hormones

Research shows that 46% of Americans are less careful about what they eat when stress is high. People are also more likely to eat quickly and binge eat when stressed. Chemical messages governing what, when and how much you eat function less effectively when you’re under stress, making it more likely to overeat and harder to tell when you’ve had enough.

The first sign of stress causes hundreds of biochemicals to be released in the body. Your body is bathed in stress hormones that speed up aging, drain emotional energy and give you a gnawing feeling of living only to survive, instead of flourish. Stress hormones depress your mood and make you less resilient in the face of life’s challenges.

At the top of the stress hormone list is cortisol, which is often called “the stress hormone.” Cortisol is important because over time, it can cause sleeplessness, memory problems, retention of fat molecules, and fat buildup in the arteries which can lead to heart disease and a whole list of other problems.

Cortisol converts fat into energy to help you cope with stress, but if you don’t burn it off, it gets redistributed around the waist and hips.

Negative emotions create increases in cortisol levels. Every time you feel anxious, worried or annoyed having to cope with a stressful situation, more cortisol is pumped into your system. Excess amounts tend to make you feel even more anxious.

When the body can no longer bear the extra load of stress, it makes adaptations to try to adjust to it. You can end up feeling exhausted and less resistant to immune system failures.

Fortunately, you have hormones that help you reduce and cope with the stress response and increase mood. Stress and your emotional state are highly linked to emotional eating. If you feel good and your stress level is low, you are less likely to overindulge. It pays to strengthen your ability to face stressful situations calmly, use stress relief techniques consistently, and meet challenges with a positive perspective. Cultivating a positive sense of optimism will do a lot towards combating stress and feelings of being overwhelmed.

So what about you? What do you do to keep your mood up and combat stress? Please share in the comment box!

Are You Hungry For Something More Than Food?

We use food for stress relief, and as a source of comfort and solace. But no matter how much you eat, it won’t bring more love, nurturing or acceptance into your life.

The more stress we feel, the more the felt need for a reward or a distraction in order to feel good – a way of telling ourselves we are good or we are deserving.

Continue reading

How To Handle Stressful Events Without Overeating

Stressful events create anxiety. Stress related eating occurs when the urge to eat is triggered by anxiety. Your emotional brain takes over and you experience a strong desire to eat.

Anxiety and stress go together. Sometimes, it’s a build up of stressful events over time.

Sometimes, it’s one big event that causes you to lose your composure. It feels like it’s too much to handle. Your feelings may be so strong that you don’t know what to do, or how you will get through it. Continue reading

Heartmath and Emotional Eating

I just watched a webinar on how to stop emotional eating and stress eating from the folks at Heartmath. In a 6-week pilot study, their research showed:

  • 5.2 lb. average weight reduction over 6 weeks of using the Heartmath stress reducer
  • Average waist size reduced by 2.1 inches
  • Average hip circumference reduced by 1.78 inches
  • Calmness significantly increased
  • Anger, resentfulness and stress significantly reduced

These results were all accomplished WITHOUT any specific food or exercise regimen, only using the Heartmath emWave tool.

Continue reading

Has Stress Eating Become A Habit?

Has stress eating become a habit? Is it hard to stop stress eating once you start? I’ll bet you aren’t reaching for carrots!

According to a recent study in the Journal of Consumer Research, just a few bites of a sweet treat may leave you yearning for more foods packed with sugar and fat.

Drexel University professor, Evan Forman, Ph.D. conducted a study showing that when participants savored one chocolate truffle, they ended up craving unhealthy foods, such as pizza, potato chips, and ice cream.

“Sampling decadent foods seemed to set off an unconscious urge to overindulge,” Dr. Forman explained. Knowing this fact can help you plan for the unintended consequences of stress eating. Continue reading