Stop Emotional Eating Before It Starts
Emotional eating is a common cause of weight gain and can make it difficult to drop those extra pounds. If you tend to turn to food as a response to more than just physical hunger, try these tips to help stop emotional eating before it starts.
- Always ask: Are you hungry? Before you put any food in your mouth, take the time to stop and ask if you’re physically hungry. How long has it been since your last meal? Are you feeling anxious or stressed or bored instead of hungry? If you tend to do a lot of mindless munching, try keeping track of everything you eat and write down how you feel when you’re eating.
- Find new coping mechanisms. Once you’ve identified the emotion you’re trying to address with food, the next step is to find a new way to address it. Depending on the emotion you’re dealing with, there are a variety of techniques to try.
- Stress: Remove yourself from the stressful situation, take deep breaths, or listen to music that helps calm you.
- Sadness or loneliness: Exercise to release mood-boosting endorphins, play with your pet, or write a letter to a friend.
- Boredom: Try out a new hobby, play a game, or read.