It took me a while to come to terms with the fact that I am an emotional eater. In fact I tried ways to stop it and, for whatever reason, had very little luck. One way that I helped my emotional eating from becoming a huge stress in my life, or from becoming more of a major weight gain issue, was to beginning choosing healthier foods. Here are a few ways to choose healthier foods and have them ready when your emotional eating kicks in.
Find Healthy Replacements
We have all heard the eat this not epitaph over and over. We know that we shouldn’t be eating things like ice cream, cookies, cake, and pastas. However, these are the foods that are increasingly common during emotional eating sessions and can have the most negative effect on our overall weight. By finding replacements, like Greek yogurt for ice cream, you may still be having the emotional eating session but your food will be healthier. I will admit that this was one of the hardest things in the world for me to grasp. Intellectually I knew all of this and knew I needed to do it. Emotionally that ice cream and cake (okay pecan pie in one sitting) was screaming my name.
Make the Replacement Real
You can go through books, make notes, and look at replacement foods all day. None of that will do you any good if you don’t make the actual change to the diet. Those replacement options are worthless without the change. Don’t spend hours researching what you need to replace, you already know which foods are bad for you. you also, most likely, know the foods to replace it with. Make sure that you actually replace the food. Do a purge of your kitchen and food stash. Get rid of the cookies, candies, cakes, pastas, ice creams, and other foods. Get rid of processed foods that can have an abundance of sodium or sugars. Once you have purged your pantry, replace the items with the options you found during your research (I know I said don’t research but you know you didn’t listen) or the ones that you know are better for you.. Now, your pantry is stocked and you can only go for the foods that are there. If the bad foods are gone, you are only left with the better choices. This has been the biggest help for me. If there aren’t candy and cookies I can’t binge on them.
What the heck are busy foods you ask? These are the foods that are healthy, but require more time to chew and digest than others. They usually are also the same foods that fill you up faster as well. For example, carrot sticks are an item that is a busy food. You can’t just take two bites and two chews and swallow them. You really have to chew up and take your time with something like carrots or other hard vegetables. They fill you up decently well, offer natural fiber, and are good for your digestive system. By choosing these foods you will eat less, eat better, clean your system, and help with weight gain.
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These are only three of the options to finding healthier foods for your emotional eating issues. However, by putting these three steps into action you can effectively reduce the amount of food you consume during an emotional eating binge as well as increase the overall healthy aspects of those foods and their toll on your body.
Emotional eating is a hard habit to break. Most of the time you never break it but you can do the things above to help make it healthier. Lets face we all find certain foods comforting at different times. Taking the steps needed to ensure that you are piling on empty calories can go a long way to controlling your emotional eating.
ARE YOU AN EMOTIONAL EATER? DO YOU HAVE WAYS TO MAKE HEALTHIER CHOICES WHEN IT COMES TO FOOD? SHARE YOUR THOUGHTS WITH US IN THE COMMENTS PLEASE.