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You celebrate your big win this month by going out to dinner, ordering the best champagne or cake.

You say, “But I’ve been good, so I deserve it” and then you proceed to order a double side of fries.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m all for having balance and eating according to your goals plus having some “treat” meals too. But regulating your emotions with food is not healthy for your body or your self esteem and has adverse effects psychologically and physically.

What is emotional eating (in a nut-shell)

Emotional eating is when you eat out of feeling stressed, bored, depressed, nervous or anxious.
When you solely rely on food to help you manage your emotions you rob yourself of the experience necessary to develop your emotional muscles. Every time you feel stressed you have the opportunity to build your emotional muscles by changing your perspective, asking for support or developing another way to take care of yourself. Stress causes an increase of cortisol which makes you crave carbs and then feels like a never ending cycle.

When you choose to cope with food you walk yourself straight out of the emotional gym. By taking yourself out of the emotional gym you learn to rely on food which becomes the mechanism by which you learn to feel good. This only leaves you feeling out of control and focused on the next sugary/salty fix.

Emotional eating feels like you can’t stop because of the chemical reaction in your brain. Dopamine is created with certain pleasure foods that contain fat, sugar and salt
Meanwhile your underlying beliefs about how food may eases your pain and help to soothe you further supports this ugly habit.

Here are 4 things that contribute to emotional eating:

1. Awareness: Not being aware of your body sensations, hunger, thirst, fatigue.
2. Unmet desires: Running a business can be very demanding at times which can leave little time for you total care of you.
3. Not dealing with your feelings: Eating can mask a difficult emotion because of the physiological effect that happens in your body when you eat sugar or carbs.
4. Physiology: Being chronically tired can lead to overeating.

Here are 6 things you can do to reduce or eliminate emotional eating:

1. Allow yourself to feel the emotions
2. Get support to manage the emotion and develop effective coping tools
3. Integrate other pleasurable activities in your life
4. Address your troubled relationships
5. Learn to feel the difference between hunger and food (my free Sugar Crush Opt in shows you how)
6. Understand your triggers -if you know you eat when you feel sad or lonely, develop a strategy to cope with this ahead of time.

We are all in this together. Want help getting back on track? Sign up here for a complementary strategy call.



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