We all have used food at some point in our life to cope with emotions, maybe not to the extent of going to a psychotherapist but just by using food as a reward after a hard-working day, maybe eating pizza for dinner while watching your favorite TV show or just entertaining friends and having an unusually large meal…
I recently visited a very good friend of mine in Ohio. We have known each other for almost 10 years so it was absolutely a pleasure staying at her beautiful home and spending time with her family.
She loves baking and believe me she bakes amazingly well. I have been on a 99% gluten free diet because it benefits me in living a healthy and energetic life. I am by no means gluten intolerant. I used to buy bread for my family and for friends from the local grocery store which I did not like because I know the bread we buy is loaded with preservatives and additives. I definitely was going to learn baking homemade bread from her and I did.
Now, did I eat that homemade bread..YES of course. It was yumm..Now, I did not eat because I lacked willpower. I ate it for emotional reasons with full control over the quantity. Also, home baked bread is always healthier and tastier than store bought.
With our frazzled and fast-paced culture we are all drifting apart and getting disconnected from one another. For me it was like going back to my roots, my country where I grew up and I loved the socializing, the talking,eating together and bonding and the list goes on and on. So, we all have emotional reasons at times on why we over-indulge in food.
Are you using food to cope with a situation?
Let’s now talk about the serious emotional eating disorder where one uses food to cope with stress,anxiety,depression,feeling of loneliness or even a feeling of unworthiness.
Did you know your relationship with food mirrors your relationship to people,including yourself.
In this video David Synder talks about emotional eating, binge eating and how to overcome them…
Overeating and emotional eating are closely linked but they are not exclusively related.
I am here to tell you that you can overcome emotional eating. It is not going to be easy especially if you have been battling it since childhood, but it is doable.
Is it hard for you to say “No” to people? I was for me earlier not any more.
I had to eventually learn to say “NO” to people because if I can’t say “No” to people chances are I cannot say “No to food” . I grew up trying to avoid conflict in the family, wanting to keep everyone happy , making sure no one was upset with me….but as I grew older I realized that by doing so I was denying my own needs.
I had to embark on a life-changing journey in developing a healthy relationship with myself , knowing how to deal with my emotions, learning how to relate to others . This greatly helped me develop a very healthy relationship with food.
We all love food . Don’t we!
1. Food helps boost mood.
2. It changes the chemical balance of the body.
3. Carb rich foods boosts the level of seratonin(a brain chemical that regulates mood)
4. Some foods increase endorphins another brain chemical.
The dark-side of emotional eating
1. Weight gain
2. Feeling of Shame
3. Feeling of failure
The first and the most important way to overcome emotional eating is “FINDING YOUR MOTIVATION”
Here are a few ways to do it …
• Am I someone who really want to overcome my emotional eating habits…or is there a part of me that doesn’t want to change !
• How do I feel about myself with the weight I am today? What is my view on my body image?
• What did I try in the past? Did it work? If not why?
Get your 7-8 hours of sleep every night. Studies have proven that adequate sleep is necessary for proper balance of hormones. Hormones affect your appetite and fat storage and staying up late at night only makes you tired and hungry thereby worsening mood disorders which leads to the path of least resistance…..using food to cope.
Think about the feeling you would get if you were your ideal weight. Visualize yourself as the person you want to be.If all of the above does not motivate you chances are you don’t want to change. Now, you have to dig deeper to find out why not? Why do you think you are not worth it? Did you have a toxic relationship with a family member growing up?
Take some time off and assess the most important relationship of your life…”YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH YOURSELF”. Everything else will fall in place.
Remember that you are awesome and you deserve the best life ever.
Cheers to healthy living !!