Just recently I have seen a massive increase in queries relating to uncontrolled overeating, binge-eating or ’emotional’ eating. Many ask whether this is just a return to old ways, that real hunger that has returned, or something more sinister? Whatever the answer (and there are many), it helps initially if you can recognise the difference between physical hunger and emotional hunger, so that you can get the help to tackle it. The graphic below is a good start to determine the differences between the two. If you lean more towards
the latter emotional hunger symptoms then do seek help from your bariatric team, GP or health professional. Do not suffer in silence and bear the brunt of remorse, guilt and feelings of failure alone!
If you are an emotional eater, you are not alone. Many people find themselves turning to food as a means of comfort, stress relief, or even celebration. The trouble with emotional eating is that it doesn’t alleviate our emotional needs and often leaves us feeling guilty or possibly even sick to our stomach. Learning what your emotional eating “triggers” are can help you recognize the difference between emotional and physical hunger and therefore allow you to break free from emotional eating.
To stop emotional eating you must first recognize when you do it. Emotional eating occurs when you eat because of circumstance instead of hunger. When you go looking for food, ask yourself if you’re about to eat to fuel your body or because you are stressed, sad, anxious, lonely, overtired, or bored. Be mindful of what your body needs and what your emotions need. If you find yourself reaching for food when you are “emotionally hungry”, try satisfying your needs through activities such walking, reading, taking a bath, dancing, or talking to a trusted friend. Remember – Stop. Challenge. Choose.
Feature courtesy of www.Cassandra-Jackson.com