Hello my lovelies. I hope this post finds you all well when you arrive here. I want to talk about an important topic near and dear to my own hips! Let me ask you a question is your Hunger Meter broken? How many times do you find yourself diving into a bag of chips, leftovers, or emptying the candy bowl? So many of us mamas for various reasons have struggled with emotional eating at one point or another in our lives. We may get better at controlling it at times but then go right back to it another. Let’s talk about what emotional eating is:
Emotional eating is a form of “mindless eating” where you are not eating because you are hungry. Emotional eating is a sudden urge or craving to eat right at the moment. They come on suddenly and can be paired with a lot of intense emotions. During these times some people can crave a specific type of food or a “go to food” that they enjoy when they indulge in something. Emotional eaters typically do not stop when they are full they will continue to eat without limits. Binge eating is typically followed by remorse or guilt over indulging in so much good. The satisfaction from emotional eating binges is only temporary. A lot of our expectation for instant gratification can come easily in the form of a comforting plate of food. My top comfort food would be my mother’s home made macaroni and cheese or pizza.
Think about it when your upset, stressed, or tired what do you think of eating when you are telling yourself I deserve a treat…it’s been a long day, long night. One of my best friends from college and I now joke all the time because we use to get upset about whatever drama was happening at that moment in college. Then we would say let’s go to McDonald’s. And we would feed our feels in french fries. It’s amazing how conditioned we can become to enjoy our “treats” or “comfort foods” as rewards for stress, boredom, and tears. So what do we do about it?! Well take a look below and read all about my 7 tips for mastering your emotional eating🙌🏻
1. Start a food diary. Track your food for one week to start. Everything you put in your mouth from snacks, to candy, to meals, to drinks should be written down. So make note if you have special occasions, were sick, or were stressed these can affect your eating patterns. Make sure you tell on yourself! 🙋🏼♀️ Keeping track can help you help you identify patterns of emotion or mindless eating. By looking at the times of day you are over eating or what was happening at that time. This info helps you identify triggers that lead you a broken hunger meter! For example: my triggers are stress particularly anger based, boredom, and comfort. That is when I get triggered to indulge.
2. Distract yourself. Have activities planned during the times you might feel like indulging. Have go to ones planned like reading, journaling, or playing a Game on your phone.
3. Take care of yourself. Try to devote 15-20 minutes to a self care activity a day. Self care is under rated and under used in our world today. We hear lots of people talk about self care but we rarely try to fit “ourselves in”. Us moms, parents, partners rarely feel like we have time to for one more thing in for the day. But we can’t pour from an empty cup. So Things like meditating, gardening, chiropractor, reading personal development, gratitude journaling, praying are some of my favorites.
4. Physical activity. It is widely known through research that exercise can help boost positive chemicals in the brain. If we can feel amazing from something self induced like exercise why wouldn’t we?! Walking, running, weights!
5. Eat in the same place. Make it a point to eat at the table or bar stool. Making it a little more formal means no comfy spot comfy blanket comfy snacking happens. Eating in the same place means more control.
6. Plan your meals. Meal prepping/planning can be a powerful thing. Take a couple days out of your week to shop, prep, and organize your food life for the week. It’s amazingly simple and not as complex or time consuming as it sounds so breath my dear. Meal prepping can be a saving grace for us mamas!
7. Know the difference between physical hunger and emotional hunger. Physical hunger is gradual, is patient, is a few hours after our last meal, and involves deliberate choices. Emotional hunger comes on suddenly, is typically a craving for a certain food, is impulsive, and does not stop.
Be patient with yourself my dear behavior changes take time. We all have our days but feeling guilty or beating ourselves up with negative thoughts doesn’t help us at all. It can only lead to relapsing. Acknowledge and move on🙌🏻 be happy with your food choices and happy with yourself.