Have you experienced emotional eating? Many people have strong food cravings when experiencing intense emotions like sadness, frustration, stress and even happiness. While this is perfectly natural, it can negatively impact your nutrition plan and keep you from achieving your weight loss goals. Luckily, there are several steps you can take to stop emotional eating and get the results you’re looking for.
The Mood-Food Connection
Eating is a well-known coping mechanism. People often use it to deal with uncomfortable emotions like stress, grief, loneliness, boredom, sadness, and even fear. Emotional eating isn’t just limited to dramatic life events – it can also be the result of daily stressors like work or relationships. Whether you’re dealing with financial struggles, health issues, personal conflicts, or fatigue, you could be using food to deal with your emotions.
Unfortunately, most emotional eaters will reach for sugary or high-calorie items when they’re looking for an edible distraction. This leads to guilt and shame. You may feel discouraged by your eating habits, and this negative self-perception can lead you to repeat the cycle.
How to Stop Emotional Eating
If all of this sounds familiar, you may be wondering how you can progress on your weight loss journey. There are many effective strategies you can try to keep yourself on the right track, such as:
- Stress reduction: If your emotional eating is tied to stress, try to incorporate stress-relieving activities in your daily routine. Techniques like walking, yoga, meditation, and deep breathing may help you reduce your stress levels, and in turn, make you less likely to reach for food when you’re feeling anxious.
- Relieve boredom: When boredom strikes, it’s easy to reach for a snack. If your lack of interest is making you crave food, distract yourself by going for a walk, calling a friend, or journaling.
- Get healthy snacks: If you have a particular food you reach for during bouts of emotional eating, it’s best not to keep it in the house. Instead, have plenty of healthy snacks on hand to give your body the nourishment it needs.
- Avoid deprivation: Depriving yourself of your favorite foods will only make you more likely to overeat later. Having treats in moderation will satisfy your cravings while supporting your weight loss journey.
- Make it a learning experience: If you do experience emotional eating, try to forgive yourself and learn from the experience. Focus on all the positive changes you’ve made in your life so far and recognize that weight loss is a journey.
- Get professional help: Not sure where to start? Our professional medical weight loss team at WildBerryMD can help. We provide nutritional counseling and health coaching to facilitate your weight loss journey.
Get Started With WildBerryMD Today
Our effective medical weight loss programs at WildBerryMD can help you beat emotional eating and live your best life. To schedule an appointment with our professional staff of medical weight loss doctors and coaches in Tucson, call (520) 762-1557 or send us a message here
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