100 lb. Club - When you have been blind to common sense for so long...




lottie63
11-06-2010, 01:58 PM
So, my bf has been stressed at work, which has turned him into quite the emotional eater...then he flat out asked for my help saying, "We need to do something. I need to do something. I'm never hungry or full I just eat and eat."

So, on oct 19th we both went back to spark. This time though, it's all about figuring out why it won't stay off! Ha. So, we both kind of admitted we are emotional eaters. So now it's become just as much about eating less and moving more as it has about analyzing the reasons we're eating when we're not physically hungry. Or, eating until we're sick and not knowing how to stop.

His job has gotten a little better, they finally hired ONE person so far, (they recently lost two and he spent many weeks working 6 day work weeks.)

My other diet buddy, her job is stressful too. Who's isn't really? (Well...me. ha.) and we all started watching and sparking right about the same time. I asked them both separately, has their stress gone down, and they both said yeah, a bit.

Work HAS admittedly gotten better for both of them, but...it got me thinking. What is this stupid cycle even FOR?

stressed so we eat, eating stresses us out cuz we know we're being unhealthy and packing on lbs, so we get stressed about it and eat more...w...t...h.

ha.

I dunno, I have found that working through the emotional stuff itself is reducing my stress. Both of my buddies have found this as well.

Oh well, anyhow, CONCLUSION ;) :

While emotional eating may have at one time eased feelings of sadness, stress, anxiety, anger, etc for many of us...in the long run, it stopped being effective in any real way because after awhile, the poor eating habits become a stress in themselves....

I know this may sound like common sense...but...

I don't know. I have never really THOUGHT about it, even if it was obvious or knocking around in my head for awhile prior. Just being aware, seems to be helping me.

I have been On Plan for 18 days, and really, I am learning something new every day. :)


kaplods
11-06-2010, 02:30 PM
The problem with "common sense" is that sometimes what we believe to be true, isn't really what's going on (or at leat it's not the whole picture).

I've been dieting since age 5. I was a Weight Watcher's member at 8 with my mom, so I was very young when I was introduced to the idea of emotional eating. I remember "knowing" that I shouldn't eat when I was mad or sad since at least the 5th grade.

For decades, I tried to fix my emotions, thinking I must be one really messed up basket case that I couldn't get a handle on the emotional eating.

I eventually learned (through a couple happy accidents) that there were physiological explanations for my overly emotional responses. It wasn't only that I ate in response to emotions, my food choices were actually making me more emotional.

It didn't make sense to me (so common sense was of no use), but eventually my food journals proved it to me. When I eat a lot of carbs (especially the processed ones), I'm far more emotionally vulnerable. I'm easily angered and upset, every small obstacle seems like a huge tragedy. When I ate healthier, my head was in a much better place.

I am not saying that all emotional issues can be cured with a moderately low-carb, whole-food diet. I'm also not saying that emotional hunger doesn't exist, I'm just saying that what you eat can make emotional issues worse.

There's a book called "It's not what you're eating, it's what's eating you." Great book about emotional eating, but I've come to believe it's not the whole picture. If I were to write a book on my experience, I guess I would title it "It's not only what's eating you, it's also what you're eating."

souvenirdarling
11-06-2010, 02:39 PM
It has me thinking "Why do I handle stress so badly? Why do I resort to this, and why doesn't everyone?" I realised that before my job, when I worked evenings, I would sometimes anxiety eat for HOURS! :(

I'm a lot better now at anxiety eating, but not so much about stress eating ie. exams, procrastinating. Things like coffee and tea, smoothies and gum help me keep my mouth and tastebuds occupied. Other than that, I sometimes consider whether a little therapy would be helpful.


Rosinante
11-06-2010, 02:56 PM
Excellent. and great that the two of you are working at it together.

Here's a thing: I was a bit gloomy on Thursday, emotions all over the shop and not sure how to get them back. As I plodded up the hill home from town, I thought, Hm, now what would I like to eat.....(eating has always been my first resort in times of emotional stress) and I suddenly, for the first time in 55 years, 6 months and 8 days, discovered that I knew absolutely that whatever the problem was, food wasn't going to sort it. What a moment! No strain, no trying to convince myself I didn't want something tasty: I knew with certainty that food wasn't the answer.

I couldn't work out what the solution Was but what I'm saying is - there Will be a sudden epiphany, and the emotional power of food will vanish in a puff of smoke!

dragonwoman64
11-06-2010, 04:14 PM
While emotional eating may have at one time eased feelings of sadness, stress, anxiety, anger, etc for many of us...in the long run, it stopped being effective in any real way because after awhile, the poor eating habits become a stress in themselves....

I hear ya. I think I have and sometimes still use food as a way to come down from anxiety and stress (esp chocolate). I sometimes eat when I feel tired, as opposed to feeling hungry. And I see food as a reward (I had a hard, stressful week, now I want to eat something GOOD).

to a certain extent, I believe those reactions are 1) pretty normal or rather widespread, and 2) have a big habitual element to them (ie, the tendency to reach for chocolate when I feel stressed or anxious).

I agree that my bad eating habits have added to my stress, physically and mentally. when I'm eating healthily, it's like I'm not carrying around that guilt and anxiousness that comes from eating stuff I wish I weren't -- plus, I just don't feel physically as good or balanced, which adds to that.

DixC Chix
11-06-2010, 05:21 PM
Alicia/Lottie63
Just being aware, seems to be helping me.
You are so right!!! Why did it take me so long to learn this, to get it sunk into my head?

Kaplods
For decades, I tried to fix my emotions, thinking I must be one really messed up basket case that I couldn't get a handle on the emotional eating.

OMG - You put into words all that I couldn't.
If I were to write a book on my experience, I guess I would title it "It's not only what's eating you, it's also what you're eating."
So true - I never binged on poached fish, yogurt, carrots sticks or quinona.

Souvenirdarling
Things like coffee and tea, smoothies and gum help me keep my mouth and tastebuds occupied.
I've started using whitening strips to keep my mouth unavailable until I can work through stress.

Rosinante
there Will be a sudden epiphany, and the emotional power of food will vanish in a puff of smoke!
I am so ready for that moment

Dragonwoman64
when I'm eating healthily, it's like I'm not carrying around that guilt and anxiousness
That's is half the battle and I am enjoying that with a nice string on OP days. Its the other half, the unexpected jolts of bad news and disappointments that I fear.

I love reading your thoughts and ideas. You give me so much to think about and absorb into my consciousness.

findingfawn
11-06-2010, 08:34 PM
Lottie, first of all :hug:.

I too have decided this time I need to focus on more than just calories in/calories out. I have done a lot of soul searching, and though I'm not an emotional eater I don't think, there are some things that have happened in my past that have definately warped my thinking and helped me pack on a lot of this weight that I am carrying right now. I'm not ready to share, but it's almost a silly reason when I think of it, but even being silly when I bring it to the surface I realize how much it has caused me to "destroy" myself.