Living Maintenance - How does your way of eating affect your mood?




surfergirl2
02-27-2013, 01:39 PM
I feel like in the last month, since being on my plan (i'm posting here even though i'm not exactly in maintenance, because i'm not actively trying to lose--just sticking with a slightly lower calorie plan), i'm kind of grumpy all the time! I'm probably more even-keeled than i used to be--less ups and downs--but generally i feel a pretty constant, moderate level of annoyance at everyday life. I guess it's because i can't turn to food to dull the senses when something or someone annoys me anymore. Don't get me wrong--i think it's good to learn to deal with things without turning to food--i just wondered if anyone else was experiencing this.


Exhale15
02-27-2013, 02:15 PM
Yes! Grumpy, and frustrated to discover how often I think about having some junk food and that I have issues I have to address.

But, when I eat more lean protein, greens/veggies, and fruits and leave out the processed carbs, I feel better. Every couple of months I go 'off' and spiral into a couple days of junk, then I realize what I've done and go back on plan.

So, it's a process - the big thing is to be sure to get in good nutrition and not just focus on low calories. Good luck !

ICUwishing
02-27-2013, 04:31 PM
Trying to follow a low-fat diet gave me a really short fuse. On top of the other results, it was pretty clear that it wasn't going to work long term. Lately, the only thing that's made me a bit grumpy was that we had a short-term concentration of meals that were heavy on ingredients that I have to watch, so my portions were much smaller than I'd like them to be (I target very high levels of natural colors). Almost through to the other side, so there's a light at the end of the tunnel!


berryblondeboys
02-27-2013, 04:34 PM
For me, it's not the food plan that gets me in a funk, it's missing too many days of exercise. One day off, I'm still mostly OK. Two days off and I'm getting down. Three days off and I'm in a funk - sad, teary, unmotivated which then makes it even harder to go back to working out. No wonder it's been so easy to give up in the past!

The food stuff doesn't tend to do that to me.

JenMusic
02-27-2013, 05:13 PM
After 3+ years of changing (with many modifications along the way) I can absolutely say that my WOE affects my mood. And, as Melissa said, exercise fits into that.
- Sugar (added sugars, white sugar, white flour) depresses me and aggravates my SAD in the winter. No question. My moods, including PMS, go bonkers when I've had this in excess (by which I mean, excess for me).
- Fat (healthy oils and fats, but I don't avoid anything except trans fats) help my mood and energy level tremendously.

Whenever I'm low in energy, I check my fat level. Have I been eating enough nuts and olive oil and fatty fish? Within my calorie guidelines, of course. That really affects me.

This is no magic bullet, but it's definitely a trend I've become very aware of, especially this past year as I was up and down on the maintenance scale.

Sheila53
02-27-2013, 10:28 PM
I am horribly mean and nasty (just ask my DH) when I eat sweets and carbs. I'm a much nicer person when I'm eating "clean" as they say. Now I tend to feel any hunger pangs as a good thing, although I try to avoid them. Following a higher protein and fat (relatively) and low carb WOE gives me more energy and helps me lift weights better. Seeing (and feeling) more muscle makes me very happy. :)

ChickieChicks
02-27-2013, 10:58 PM
I am going trough food apathy. ;)

I know what calorie range I need to maintain, and I very rarely find it worthwhile to waste calories on low volume-high calorie density foods. I've taken to eating a lot of ProBars, nuts, fruit, huge salads and cereal with skim milk. I throw in eggs when I feel I am down on protein. But it is just...mundane. Definitely eating to live right now...not living to eat. Not sure how I feel about it exactly, but it is "easy".

kittycat40
03-02-2013, 03:37 PM
I always feel better in every way when I eat the way I know my body prefers... Protein and veggies.
Of course, I'm cranky when hungry and sometimes realize this after the fact (I eat, feel better, then realize I was a beast ;)

This past week, my family and I were on vacation. Towards the end I stopped being as careful with what I was eating and increased carbs fats and sodium. Then I recognized that I was sTARving all day and night. So clear. My mood did change also. Way more irritable.

Edited to add now that I have returned from vacation I am battling the carb cravings.

losermom
03-03-2013, 08:58 AM
Too much sugar, and too many white carbs, make me tired, crabby and constipated. And like Jen when I'm feeling lethargic, eating some healthy fats and oils do help. Also lots of veggies are always on order to help me feel on track. :)

saef
03-03-2013, 12:06 PM
You know, I can't tell if eating carbs & sugar affects me physically -- or if I become more self-critical because I know I'm eating poorly, and view myself as a failure at my lifetime project of keeping weight off & staying healthy, and consequently, because I'm not on good terms with myself, fall into a depression. I can never discount the psychological aspect when I'm talking about how I feel physically. They're so intertwined it's hard to tell one from the other, because when I'm low-spirited, I feel fat, and when I'm at peace with the world, I feel light and fit.

BTW, I'm loving ChickieChicks' coinage "food apathy." I know exactly how that feels. It's close to "food boredom." But you know I think it's okay to be bored by food, as long as it doesn't end in my cycling to the opposite feeling, which is -- what? Food thrill-seeking? Seeing the grocery store and fast food restaurants as an amusement park? All I know is, the more that I try to get the stimulus of color, creativity, connoisseurship, warmth and laughter from stuff other than food, the happier I am with myself.

lin43
03-07-2013, 06:17 PM
. . . Food thrill-seeking? Seeing the grocery store and fast food restaurants as an amusement park?

Oh, this is SO true of me. I actually look forward to going grocery shopping---and have been that way for YEARS (whether fat or thin). I'm especially this way about Whole Foods or Trader Joes. In fact, it's a real event for me to go there as both stores are 1 1/2 hours away from my home. Today, I was supposed to go, but got waylaid, so I couldn't. I was actually disappointed!

surfergirl2
03-07-2013, 06:57 PM
Oh, this is SO true of me. I actually look forward to going grocery shopping---and have been that way for YEARS (whether fat or thin). I'm especially this way about Whole Foods or Trader Joes. In fact, it's a real event for me to go there as both stores are 1 1/2 hours away from my home. Today, I was supposed to go, but got waylaid, so I couldn't. I was actually disappointed!

Me too. I get particularly excited about Trader Joe's. There are several different grocery stores in my neighborhood, and i get obsessed about the different things i need from each one--so i often end up going grocery shopping several times a week.

In the last couple of months, i have decided to stop that--basically, stop my obsession with food. So the first thing i did was not allow myself to go grocery shopping until i had finished almost all of the food in my house. Sure, there were a few days at the end when i was eating canned veggies instead of fresh, but i survived. After that, i have been only allowing myself to do one grocery store trip per week. I decided i really don't need to go multiple times a week--it's a waste of time and money, and more importantly, it encourages my obsession with food. There is plenty of variety that i can get in a single store, no need to go to all of them!

freelancemomma
03-21-2013, 09:01 PM
Sigh. All these people who say eating carbs makes them feel awful. No such luck here. I feel great when I eat carbs. In fact, when I have a carb-heavy dinner I have noticeably more energy for working out the next morning -- I guess it's the carbohydrate-loading phenomenon in action.

F.

neurodoc
03-23-2013, 02:02 AM
Saef, I agree with you - I don't think carbs make me feel physically worse, just psychologically guilty. I DO get a sugar "crash" about 2 hours after I eat a decent amount of sweets without enough protein - I get hungry and feel drowsy for an hour, and really really want to eat bland starchy things like crackers and dry cereal. Of course, I often really really want to eat bland starchy things, so maybe the whole thing is just a cop-out.

And, Lin43 et al, what IS it about Trader Joe's? I'm in love with that store too, and have to force myself not to stock up so much that I literally can't get it all in the freezer.

asjb
03-23-2013, 08:02 AM
I find when I'm dieting that I get annoyed by bad drivers more easily!! If someone is going slow in front of me, I end up feeling very annoyed about it. When I'm not dieting, I am a lot more patient:)

Quirky Chick
03-23-2013, 08:53 AM
Yes, I think it's normal. I went on a serious year long diet, and lost over 100 lbs in the process, but it really messed with my moods. And once again, I am a little more depressed. With having clinical depression, and living with the chronic wide-spread pain of fibromyalgia, I really looked forward to watching TV and having 3 scoops of Ben & Jerry's at the end of the day as a means to give myself some comfort. I got a little cranky yesterday when I was out with my sister-in-law, niece, and my sister-in-law's mother. The three of we women are on diets, but my sister-in-law went ahead and cheated. So her mother and I sat by and watched them eat frozen yogurt with fudge brownie pieces and cake pieces with toppings. I felt like I could've stroked out.

lin43
03-23-2013, 03:27 PM
Me too. I get particularly excited about Trader Joe's. There are several different grocery stores in my neighborhood, and i get obsessed about the different things i need from each one--so i often end up going grocery shopping several times a week.

In the last couple of months, i have decided to stop that--basically, stop my obsession with food. So the first thing i did was not allow myself to go grocery shopping until i had finished almost all of the food in my house. Sure, there were a few days at the end when i was eating canned veggies instead of fresh, but i survived. After that, i have been only allowing myself to do one grocery store trip per week. I decided i really don't need to go multiple times a week--it's a waste of time and money, and more importantly, it encourages my obsession with food. There is plenty of variety that i can get in a single store, no need to go to all of them!


I'm so glad you posted this. I'm embarrassed that I view grocery shopping with pleasure. What does that say about the rest of my life that I get a thrill out of buying food? (I tend to be overworked and stressed). Surfergirl, I have toyed with the idea of doing just what you said you did, i.e., limiting my grocery shopping to once a week. I spend far too much money and time on food-related excursions.

surfergirl2
03-27-2013, 01:54 PM
Lin43--yes, i recommend doing that! It doesn't have to be forever, but just for a few weeks, try to limit your grocery shopping to once a week, just to get away from constantly thinking about food.

I had sort of a "duh" moment this morning. I learned a long time ago that food couldn't solve my big problems or depression etc. But food DOES make the little annoyances go away. The meaningless things. Sitting in annoying traffic? Grab a cookie out of your purse, and you don't care as much anymore. Things like that. I realized that's why it's the LITTLE things that are annoying me a lot these days. But...they are little things, which also means i can say to myself, just suck it up and deal with it!