I recently discovered a new little part of me…….Emotional Eating. I have noticed that I have been “rewarding” myself with food if something goes well or filling a void when not-so-good things happen. This is actually not new for me, I have had to overcome this in the past. This time around, for the most part, the food has been healthy homemade snacks and meals with some chocolate bars and veggie chips sprinkled in between. The problem has been the quantity and the reasons for eating that are not healthy. As a fitness and nutrition expert I help others, mostly women, with their nutrition. I teach how to make quick and easy homemade meals with love, how to choose meals, pinpoint areas that can be improved on and teach compassion and gratitude for where we are in our health journey’s. Imagine my surprise when I found myself emotional eating.
I love food and I am firm believer that we should enjoy our meals but when we are using food as a reward or a crutch it can wreak havoc on our bodies and our goals. This not only affects our bodies but our brain chemistry and feeling cloudy or groggy is not unusual. I am definitely not showing myself love if I am binge eating.
Now that I have pin-pointed an ouch point, meaning I have found a temporary set-back (it’s only failure if you let it continue or give up), what am I going to do enhance my health journey?
I’m going to follow these 10 tips to rock my health and so can you!
- I am going to stop rewarding myself with food. If I reach a goal, I will find non-food ways to pat myself on the back. Maybe a pedicure or a pink stripe added to my hair!
- I will assess if I am hungry vs. wanting to fill a void in a two step process:
- Drink a glass of water - many times we are thirsty when we think we are hungry
- Journal my feelings and see where I am. Maybe it is time to eat but it is always good to check in feeling-wise.
- I am going to have plenty of delicious homemade snacks/meals ready to go for when meal time hits. I usually do this but I have been slacking on the snack part.
- I am going to sit down at the table for each meal. Chew slowly with no distractions. It takes 20 minutes for your stomach to tell your brain you are hungry. I am going to slow my meals down. I have been scarfing down meals while in front of the computer or TV. That stops now.
- I am going to track my food. I have to be careful here as I can get obsessive but I believe I have not been getting in the calories required for my body and have been binging at night as my body is like - “hello, we are in starvation mode”.
- I am going to give myself a break and not be judgmental or harsh with myself. I am not upset or angry with myself. In fact, I am proud that I made this realization and created an actionable plan.
- I chose a date to start, immediately after realization and plan creation was my start date, and have been doing well.
- I will have an off day. I will give myself a few meals on the weekend where there is no counting. With lots of BBQs, travel and cottaging if someone orders pizza or make hot dogs, I will say YES please but also ensure there are lots of veggies on my plate!
- I will reach out and get help when I need it. There is no such thing as doing something on your own. We all need support. Find the expert that fits your needs and drop any guilt that may come up with a price tag.
- Be honest, with myself and others. By sharing this ouch point with you and being open and honest with myself, I can make changes much quicker. I love myself and I am super happy that I learned this new ouch point. Not only for my health but that I am able to share this with you and hopefully, you have learned a good tip or two for yourself!