You have the best intentions of eating healthy, staying on your diet and “being good” around food, but the stress of life and all the emotions get in the way! If you’re ready to stop letting emotional eating put a dent on your progress, we want to help with 5 easy tips.
So what stops us from achieving our weight loss goals?? Why do we take 1 step forward and 2 steps back??
After watching 100’s of clients go through the dieting process, the answer becomes clear.
The very thing that makes humans unique is what holds us back…..our emotions! Emotional eating, stress eating or even under-eating is often times our roadblock.
We act as our own worst enemy by assigning a value to something that was meant to have none. Food is fuel. Period. End of story. It was never meant to mean happiness, or unhappiness, or comfort or punishment. It was simply meant to be the fuel that propels us through our day.
But boy have we messed it up! We’ve added parties and celebrations, happy and sad and grief, reward and reprimand and deprivation to the mix of what food was never intended to mean. You know??
At Flexibledieting.com, we believe that the ultimate end goal with the Flexible Dieting method is to learn to “intuitively eat” or eat instinctually with balance and while enjoying life and all foods in moderation. That’s the definition of winning right there. 😉
In order to achieve this goal, it is important to get knowledge about nutrition, specifically macronutrients (carbs, protein and fat) and an understanding of our body’s requirements, tendencies and needs.
The concept seems simple, right? Get the knowledge, apply it, learn our body and maintain our weight and stop “dieting” forever. Easy as pie. 😉
To apply these methods effectively, we have to stop this vicious cycle of emotional eating and taking 1 step forward and 2 steps back.
In this blog, we’ll give you 5 simple tips to break the cycle.
But first, let’s dig into some of the signs and symptoms of emotional eating so we can gain self-awareness on the topic.
- Do you eat more or less when you feel stressed?
- Do you continue to eat when you’re full?
- Do you eat to feel better or mask emotions (when you’re unhappy, happy, anxious, bored etc.)?
- Do you reward yourself with food?
- Do you regularly eat until you feel bad about yourself?
- Do you turn to food instead of friends or family to express emotions?
- Do you regularly feel out of control around food?
Now that we have some keys to recognizing the problem now let’s work on fixing our habits as they occur WITH THESE 5 TIPS.
#1) BE HONEST with YOURSELF. Call it what it is if you do overeat or under eat because of emotions! Identifying the problem is the most important part of solving it. Tracking what you eat can be huge for accountability.
#2) COMMUNICATE! Find a friend, a spouse a relative to talk to about your feelings instead of burying them with food.
#3) DISTRACT yourself by doing something positive. Separate yourself from the food and take a walk, pet the dog, water the plants, do some chores, drink some water.
#4) PLAN AHEAD to your next meal before you’re hungry, tired, anxious etc.
#5) DON’T PUNISH. The cycle will continue to repeat if punishing behaviors become the solution to emotional eating. So skip the under eating the next day, doing hours of cardio and avoid the negative self talk.
Try out these tips and find out what works best for you. It may take a variety of strategies to navigate the problem and that’s OK! The more we learn to evolve, adapt and overcome different situations the better.
We all fall victim to emotional eating but realizing we’re responding this way is half the battle. Only then can we start to put into play strategies to eat intuitively and achieve our goals!
We hope that helps!