EMO­TIONAL EAT­ING

How emo­tional eat­ing can de­stroy your health

Great Health Guide - - CONTENTS - kelly Arbuckle

There’s noth­ing bet­ter than de­vour­ing a bar of choco­late af­ter a hard day at work, or hav­ing that ex­tra scoop of ice-cream for dessert be­cause we’re in a bad mood and need some­thing to make us feel happy. How­ever, it can turn into a dan­ger­ous spiral, if these emo­tional eat­ing habits turn into an ev­ery­day oc­cur­rence and we be­gin to de­pend on food as a way to make us feel bet­ter about our­selves.

When an in­di­vid­ual suf­fers from emo­tional eat­ing and seeks com­fort in food, they are cre­at­ing an un­healthy re­la­tion­ship with food which will ul­ti­mately re­sult in one or all of the fol­low­ing health prob­lems:

EMO­TIONAL EAT­ING IS DE­FINED AS A FOOD CRAV­ING TRIG­GERED BY EMO­TIONS RATHER THAN HUNGER

Weight-gain: Nine times out of ten, emo­tional eat­ing and com­fort food in­volves eat­ing foods with a high su­gar and/or fat con­tent. It can also lead to binge eat­ing. Con­sum­ing high fat or su­gar con­tent has an im­me­di­ate ef­fect on both the brain and di­ges­tive sys­tem - phys­i­cally and men­tally - and can lead to ad­dic­tion-like-habits such as crav­ing su­gar at a cer­tain time of day. Con­sum­ing more su­gar and fat than your body needs, will cause your body to cre­ate un­nec­es­sary fat cells. This can lead to other health prob­lems such as obe­sity, di­a­betes and heart dis­ease.

Men­tal Health: Emo­tional eat­ing is an emo­tional is­sue. It is not some­thing your body is phys­i­cally ask­ing for or needs for nu­tri­tional value. It can turn into quite a vi­cious cy­cle for those who are sus­cep­ti­ble to emo­tional eat­ing as they will, more than likely, be sus­cep­ti­ble to other men­tal health ill­nesses such as anx­i­ety and de­pres­sion. Eat­ing the wrong food, es­pe­cially with a high su­gar con­tent is a big trig­ger for anx­i­ety, leav­ing the per­son feel­ing flat, guilty, wor­ried and some­times even an­gry at them­selves af­ter the ‘su­gar high’ has worn off.

In­som­nia: For what­ever rea­son, most emo­tional eat­ing hap­pens in the evening or some­times even very early in the morn­ing. This is cre­at­ing a per­fect storm for in­som­nia by dis­rupt­ing the body’s nat­u­ral body clock and by stim­u­lat­ing the brain and the di­ges­tive sys­tem at a time when it is pro­grammed for rest­ing and re­pair­ing.

TRY SOME OF THE FOL­LOW­ING STEPS:

Don’t use food as a re­ward or com­fort for your­self: Find some­thing else that you can use as a dis­trac­tion mech­a­nism. Read a novel, be­gin a project such as a photo book, paint a pic­ture – any­thing cre­ative that can re­ward your senses, calm your nerves and dis­tract your mind from food crav­ings.

Be mind­ful in your eat­ing: Take time to think about what you’re putting on your plate and into your mouth. Cre­ate a rou­tine for eat­ing your meals in or­der to re­duce snack­ing and emo­tional eat­ing.

For ex­am­ple, ev­ery time you eat at home, sit and eat at the din­ing room ta­ble and con­sider if your body re­ally needs this ‘meal’. It can be­come easy to dis­re­gard com­fort food as a meal when you’re sit­ting on the couch snack­ing or eat­ing in bed. Sit­ting at the ta­ble will en­cour­age you to

stop, think and be ac­count­able for your ac­tions.

Ex­er­cise: This is the key to a healthy body and mind. If you ex­er­cise ev­ery day, even if it’s a twenty-minute walk, will help get the blood flow­ing, burn off fat and get your body func­tion­ing prop­erly. Hav­ing a reg­u­lar rou­tine of ex­er­cise will help your body clock move into a proper rhythm, re­duce stress, re­duce anx­i­ety and help you sleep bet­ter.

YOU CAN RE­PAIR YOUR SELF-ES­TEEM ERAD­I­CATE & HABITS OF THE UN­HEALTHY EMO­TIONAL EAT­ING

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