According to Mayo Clinic, emotional eating is used as a way to suppress or soothe negative emotions. People have used eating to cope with stress, anger, fear, boredom, sadness, and loneliness. Even traumatic events can lead an individual to develop unhealthy eating habits.
Are you an emotional eater?
Do you often find yourself eating when you're not even hungry? There may be a deeper reasoning you often find yourself looking for an answer in the refrigerator. Eating your favorite dish as a form of celebration is not considered emotional eating unless you do so often. Thanks to Help Guide, they've created a series of questions you can ask yourself to help determine if you're an emotional eater.
Review these following questions to see if you meet the criteria of an emotional eater.
"Do you eat more when you're feeling stressed?"
"Do you eat when you're not hungry or when you're full?"
"Do you eat to feel better (to calm and soothe when you're sad, mad, bored, anxious, etc.)?"
"Do you reward yourself with food?"
"Do you regularly eat until you've stuffed yourself?"
"Does food make you feel safe? Do you feel like food is a friend?"
"Do you feel powerless or out of control around food?"
If you said yes to all these questions, you may be an emotional eater. If you have been clinically diagnosed as obese, these may be the main contributor to your hefty weight gain. Discuss your theory with your medical care professional to determine the next step to take.
Here are some tips we've compiled to help you tackle your emotional eating habit.
Don't Suppress Your Emotions
Expressing emotions can be scary to some, especially if they often bury their emotions from others. But letting go, telling someone how you feel, and just expressing emotions more often can help relieve stress from your body. If you often have trouble telling someone how you feel verbally, try writing your thoughts down in a diary or to someone whom you totally trust. These may help you learn to conquer your fears and other emotions that cause you to look to food for the answer.
Exercise as an emotional outlet
Not only can exercising help promote weight loss, it can also help you deal with the emotional stresses of the day. Doctors and healthcare professionals recommend 30 minutes of physical activity daily to promote a healthy lifestyle. But if it is too soon after surgery, try using other forms of stress management or relaxation techniques. Yoga, meditation and other forms of exercise can help you unwind and find relief from everyday stress triggers. Always consult with your healthcare professional before starting any rigorous exercise regime.
Develop Mindful Eating Habits
Developing healthy eating habits ensure when you do eat, you're not munching on the wrong types of foods. Watching what you eat is essential when it comes to weight loss achievement. Start by removing any tempting unhealthy snacks from within your home and workspace. Replace any unhealthy snacks with a light, protein-filled alternative. Products like protein bars, shakes, and other healthy snacks.
Planning out your meals is a good way to develop healthier habits. This allows you to be mindful of every meal and stay on track during your diet. We understand how hard it can be planning our your meals each and every day. Not too sure how to meal plan properly? Don't have enough time in the day to do so? Not to worry, here at Bariatric Lifestyle Diet we have a solution for you. We've created customizable meal plans that can help you stay on track and reach those weight loss goals quickly and effectively.
Eat slowly and in small portions
It is important to practice portion control during your weight loss journey. Large portions, especially after weight loss surgery, can damage and stretch a sleeve or bypass. Eating in smaller portions help controls the size of your stomach and prevents uncomfortable or painful digestive issues. Eating slowly prevent you from overeating, allowing you to recognize when you are full before finishing a meal.
Seek Professional Help
If your emotional eating is due in part to a recent traumatic event, seeking professional psychological help may assist you. According to CRC Health, trauma-related problems such as flashbacks, nightmares, intentional self-harm and depression can cause some to lose his or her ability to cope in a healthy way. Events such as witnessing death, divorce, injury, accidents, humiliating experiences, or a life-threatening illness can affect a person's everyday life. A psychological professional can assist you with a number of innovative therapies to help your recovery from any trauma you may have experienced in the past.