Do you find yourself reaching for a bag of potato chips when you’re home alone watching TV, or running for a candy bar in the vending machine after you’ve had a bad meeting?
Often times we turn to food for comfort without even realizing it. But what if all of this comfort food is catching up to your waistline and starting to become a problem in your life? Here are a few steps you can implement in your life to assess and reduce emotional eating:
First, it’s important to change the way we view food. Food is fuel. It is energy that the body uses to do great things. Therefore, it’s important to feed yourself food that it can convert into energy and to eat foods that are rich in nutrients. By changing your relationship with food, you’ll ultimately work through any emotions that may be causing you to eat excessively or to eat for reasons other than hunger.
Secondly, each time you reach for a snack or something to eat, ask yourself "What am I hungry for?" If you’re physically hungry for food, by all means EAT! But if you hear a voice inside your head saying that you’re hungry for something else, take a moment and pause. Take a deep breath, become really mindful and present, and try to figure out what it is that you’re actually craving. Even if you still eat something, at least you are stopping in your tracks and breaking the habit of mindlessly reaching for food due to emotions.
Finally, sometimes it’s helpful to keep a food log – not just of what you’ve eaten, but of how you’re feeling before you eat something. By writing down your pre-eating feelings, you’ll be forced into mindfulness and you’ll also be able to look back and reflect on what foods you reach for in response to feeling certain emotions.
By following these steps, you’ll be on your way to eating food as fuel and having a healthy relationship with food in no time.
For more, check out Steph’s FREE 21 Day Challenge at StepItUpwithSteph.com.