I recently lost 36 lbs dieting and working out in the past six months. While that is good doctors suggest you can lose one to two pounds per week and be healthy. Why is it I didn’t lose more weight? It didn’t occur to me until recently that I suffer from emotional eating.
The bills are due and your paycheck isn’t enough again. Something has happened in your family that you are worried about a family member. Your boss is on you about something at work. There are thousands upon thousands of stress forms a person encounters in life. Each person copes with the stress and emotions differently. The problem arises when you cope with it through eating without realizing it. This is even more of a severe problem if you suffere from any illness that diet is important or you are dieting in attempts to lose weight.
It wasn’t until I began tracking my dietary habits through Sparkpeople I realized that despite my attempts to diet and practice clean eating, I suffer from emotional eating. When I get upset or stressed I turn to eat. So no matter how much I practice clean eating I am eating too much because I am eating when in actuality I’m not even hungry. The food becomes a source of comfort and everyone wants to be comforted when upset or stressed. The problem is when you are dieting or trying to eat healthy and you realize that you have used food when it wasn’t necessary then you feel even worse afterward.
After doing some research I have found that other people also suffer from emotional eating but hardly any doctors recognize this outside of binge eating. Binge eating is when you go on binges eating a bunch of food at one time beyond being full. That is not the same as emotional eating. In emotional eating the person eats when they are not hungry as a source of comfort but it can be in small amounts of food. Binge eating is not directly related to a person’s emotions or stress.
I have made a plan to use aspects of clean eating to help overcome emotional eating. When I am upset and start to reach for food as a comfort the foods I will be eating have no effect on my diet. I have chose to surround myself with small things of sunflower seed kernels, berries, and other items that contain protein but no amount of calories or carbs to have an effect on dieting. Additionally, I plan on performing more research on emotional eating to gain knowledge of other methods people have used to overcome this illness.