I once wrote about giving into my fatigue at the airport and eating a bagel when I wasn’t hungry. Everyone eats for emotional and stress relief reasons occasionally. That’s NOT what gets you in trouble.
It’s the constant, dimly conscious, reactive eating that keeps occurring time and time again that will put on weight.
Let’s face it – some people are barely aware of their own existence, much less their eating habits!
It’s what you do AFTER the emotional eating that matters most. If you berate yourself, it often sets off another whole storm of emotions – guilt, anger, self hatred, defeat, hopelessness, etc. that then have to be dealt with (and often lead to more emotional eating.)
If you allow it to continue, then a brief lapse into emotional eating can turn into several days of semi-binging. Continue reading
We might as well face it, comfort eating is at an all-time high. Our lives get more and more hectic all the time. It seems like ever since 9/11, there has been a lot written about comforting ourselves and calming our fears.
One of the biggest reasons people overeat is for self-soothing.
When stress and uncertainty increase, we turn to what we know, especially if it has associations of a simpler and safer time in our lives.
If you are always wondering how to stop overeating, there is one thing that needs to happen. You need to signal your body that it is satiated.
Here’s the key for how to stop overeating: When you consistently eat healthy fats, such as coconut oil, you provide vital nutrition to your body. But beyond that, you trigger a powerful mechanism that is key to success in weight loss: satiation. Continue reading
Too much stress eating?
I was talking to a friend the other day, who had a really great idea. Inside her snack cabinet, she posted a note, with the simple question:
“Why are you here?”
Then she lists a few choices –
- You are hungry
- You got triggered by an emotion
- You want a reward
- You are procrastinating
If it’s not #1 (You are hungry), then it makes you stop and think about what you are doing, and why you are doing it. Of course, you can ignore the note, or simply declare “I don’t care!” if you want it badly enough. But at the very least, it should give you a chance to pause…at least some of the time.
Of course, if you want to be really clever, you can devise stress eating strategies for each response, so that you start to learn more about how you feel, and what you need. A little bit of planning goes a long way.
What’s a stress eating trigger? Anything that makes you want to eat. It could be something you see, hear, or smell. It could also be a thought or an emotion emanating from inside you. Yes, your own self talk could trigger the urge to eat!
The trigger is the WHY.
So it might go like this – “every time I feel tired, bored or frustrated, I have the urge for something sweet.” Continue reading
Because eating is essential to life, it’s not surprising that it is part of a well-regulated system in our bodies and minds. We feel hungry, seek out and consume food, and experience a sense of satiety. Then the cycle is repeated over and over again.
This system runs automatically, but it is influenced by many factors. For instance, research shows that we eat more in groups, but we don’t spend time thinking about eating more in groups, or even being aware that we do it. Continue reading
The other day I sat in an airport in Raleigh, NC. It was 10 a.m. and I was exhausted.
I had gotten up early to pack. My best friend wanted to have 1 last chance to go to breakfast before I left.
It had been a whirlwind trip, visiting friends and my old stomping grounds where I lived, worked and went to school for nearly 8 years.
Lots of memories there.
Did I say I was tired?
I ordered a bagel – not because I was hungry, but because I was tired. Normally, I can resist this type of conditioning and find something better to do than eat, but at the airport, there weren’t too many options.
Eating is all too often a rushed, mindless, automatic and mechanical hand-to-mouth activity.
We are in a sense, eating zombies!
Fortunately, we can be awakened and reprogrammed to actually start and stop eating when we are actually hungry.
Emotional Eating Is Not The Problem!
Let’s be honest – everyone engages in emotional eating at some time or another. That’s because the definition of emotional eating is eating any time that you are not hungry. Continue reading
“Women, Food and God” will be featured on the Oprah show this week, with Geneen Roth, author of 7 books on compulsive eating. Geneen has always been masterful at describing her compulsive eating and compulsive dieting in artful detail. This book discusses the process of her retreat students, as well as the connection of spirituality and compulsive eating. Continue reading
I can’t tell you how many posts I have read with statements like “I am gaining weight because I am stress eating!”
Many people seem to have an awareness that something is driving them to eat, and it’s easy to focus on that as the problem.
Stress eating itself is NOT the problem. It is whatever is driving you to turn to a drug, like food in the first place. When you are done eating the cookies, what drove you to the cookies in the first place is still there. Continue reading