Emotional eating is a very challenging issue when it comes to your diet, but satiety is a key component to keeping it from destroying your weight loss goals. Emotional eating can be a result of stress, boredom, fear or even happiness. The body being full and satisfied plays a big part in offsetting emotional eating.
Signs of Emotional Eating
Emotional eating is common among both men and women and often even in children. Almost any emotion is capable of setting off a cycle of emotional eating and can last for long periods of time. Here are some of the warning signs of emotional eating:
- During periods of stress, you may have cravings for sweet or starchy foods like cookies, cakes, potatoes or fried foods. You may also binge eat, meaning you may eat more than beyond your level of being satisfied.
- You may always think about food or turning to food when there is something to celebrate. You may associate having a good time with eating a big meal or having your favorite meal.
- Children may be rewarded with food for achieving certain accomplishments, or food (especially their favorite food) may be withheld if their behavior is unsatisfactory. This can lead to overeating because children may learn to comfort themselves later in life with that same food.
There are ways to prevent emotional eating and sabotaging your body’s health. It is important to practice a state of satiety, and that means making sure that the body is always satisfied, full and is full of proper nutrients. Here are some ways satiety can prevent emotional eating:
During periods of stress, keep raw cut vegetables on hand to munch on instead of sugar-laden foods. Vegetables will satisfy the body and keep you from over-eating on the wrong type of food.
Eat four to five small meals throughout the day, so that you can avoid emotional eating if a situation arises. If the body is satisfied during periods of high emotional situations, food will likely be the last thing that comes to mind. Preselect your meals, so that all you have to do is grab them and go. Mistakes can happen when there is nothing readily available, and sometimes you may reach for the quickest thing that will satisfy your hunger.
Don’t go grocery shopping or out to eat at a restaurant when you are famished. Your emotions are impatient and want to be satisfied immediately, so you’re more likely to buy things that you don’t normally buy or you may buy items that you want to eat right then. Have a small snack of fruit or crackers before going to the store so that you don’t overspend–or overeat–when you make your selections.
Comforting the body and mind with food is emotional eating, whether that emotion is stress-related or connected to feelings of happiness. Learning new techniques and habits in combating emotional eating is the key to finding success.