Tips, Tools and Miscellaneous Info

Will eat for food

Image by altemark via Flickr

I thought I’d share some information to help you deal with an area that is a personal struggle for me, emotional eating. It doesn’t matter if I’m sad, depressed, lonely, menstrual, discouraged, angry or just bored it would lead me to eating.  This became more obvious to me after faithfully tracking my food intake.


  1. Tame your stress. If stress contributes to your emotional eating, try yoga, meditation or relaxation, if that helps you.  I need a workout with a little more activity to release that inner beast.
  2. Have a hunger reality check. Is your hunger physical or emotional? You may not be hungry. Give the craving a little time to pass, drink some water or maybe you just need to pass some gas :).
  3. Keep a food diary. I can’t stress this enough.  There are free online programs (I use Fitbit), mobile phone apps or a good old fashioned pen and paper.  Write down what you eat, how much you eat, when you eat, how you’re feeling when you eat and how hungry you are. Over time, you may see patterns emerge that reveal the connection between mood and food.
  4. Get support. You’re more likely to give in to emotional eating if you lack a good support network. Lean on family and friends or a support group.  I have a great one going on facebook. Some people may benefit from therapy, too.
  5. Fight boredom. Instead of snacking when you’re not truly hungry, distract yourself. Take a walk, workout, watch a movie, play, listen to music, read, surf the Internet or call a friend.
  6. Take away temptation. Clean out the cabinets, and secret hiding places with the stash of emergency chocolate.  DON’T bring them back into the house!  You’re more likely to give in when your temptations are easily available and you’re feeling weak.
  7. Don’t deprive yourself. Everything in moderation is the key.  Allow yourself an occasional pleasure with occasional being the key word. Instead of a nightly peanut butter cup in front of the TV, replace it with a weekly dessert. Angel food cake is a new love of mine.
  8. Snack healthy. We need to eat every 2 hours to maintain an even blood sugarProtein rich foods help stabilize your blood sugar and keep you feeling energized.  Have 100 calorie almond packs, P90X bars, or dried fruit available.
  9. Get enough sleep. If you’re tired you may eat to feel more energy.  Go to bed at a decent time.

Remember that you are human and may slip occasionally.  Forgive yourself, start tomorrow fresh and take a good honest look at what triggers that eating. Try to use that as a way to learn about yourself so you can plan for similar situations in the future. Speak about yourself positively and remember that change takes time and you can do it.  You and your health are worth it.

These tips have helped me to manage my emotional eating.  It is possible and I am available to help walk you threw this if you need it.

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