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Emotional Eating

Emotional Eating yields emotional results.

According to Wikipedia, “Emotion is a biological arousal produced in response to a stimulus”. The word emotion breaks down to mean a "complex reaction pattern, involving experiential, behavioral, and physiological elements, by which the individual attempts to deal with a personally significant matter of event. It arises without conscious effort and is either positive or negative in its valence”.

“Emotional Eating is the practice of consuming large quantities of food -- usually ‘comfort’ or junk foods - in response to feelings instead of hunger. Experts estimate that 75 percent of overeating is caused by emotions,” said Charlotte E. Grayson, MD, in an article on MedNet.com.

Emotional Eating is a negative response to a stimulus. A person should eat when they are hungry not when something upsets them. Many people turn to food when they are making a difficult decision or to keep themselves occupied. This is one sure way to pack the pounds on.

There is a strong correlation between Emotional Eating and obesity. According to an abstract in the Journal of Behavioral Medicine, “Correlational analyses indicated that emotional distress associated with snacks and Emotional Eating associated with both snacks and meals were related to a subject’s percentage to be overweight”. The more overweight you are, the more likely you are to eat just because of your emotions.

Getting results takes some level of focus. No one is perfect so, sometimes your emotions can get the best of you. You can’t let this occur regularly. You need to try to stay on top of your game if you plan to succeed at your goals. Be patient with yourself. Start fresh if you give in to Emotional Eating.

Situations and Emotions that Trigger You to Eat
  • Social - Eating to fit in
  • Emotional – Eating because something or someone upsets you
  • Situational – Attending a special event
  • Physiological – Skipping meals leads to increased hunger
Get your Eating Habits Under Control
  • Find comfort in something other than food: Listen to music, talk to someone, read a book, or exercise.
  • Don’t bring junk food home: If you don’t have it at home, you have less of a chance of eating it.
  • Snack healthy: Try to snack on fruits and nuts instead of chips and candy.
  • Eat a well-balanced diet: Be sure to include your whole grain foods as much as possible. Each meal should include protein, carbs, and veggies.
  • Exercise Regularly: Regular exercise will help you physically, emotionally and mentally.
  • Get proper sleep: Proper sleep will help you burn more calories and relieve stress.
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