Food isn’t just something we eat when we feel hungry. Food is something we reach for when we’re stressed, overwhelmed, tired or just feeling down. In other words, food and emotions are intimately connected. And while a midnight bowl of ice-cream can make us feel better in the short term, it can be unhealthy in the long run – especially if your go-to snacks are loaded with fat and sugar. So, if you’re an emotional eater, try this five tips to stop emotional eating.
The key to overcoming emotional eating isn’t about denying yourself comfort food – whatever that looks like for you. Sure, you might not eat anything, but you also don’t address your emotional upset either.
These following tips don’t just help you say “No” to food. Instead, they help you say “Yes” to your emotions so that you no longer need food to solve your emotional upset.
Write it out
What’s stressing you out? Don’t keep it bottled up inside. Write it out in a journal, email, message or anywhere else.
Make a cup of tea
Herbal tea, as opposed to coffee, can usher in a sense of calm and help relax your nervous system.
Take a shower
Get sudsy with your favorite body wash and give your mind a quick reset.
Get out of your head
The good way to stop obsessing over the chocolate in the cupboard is to move your body to get out of your head. Put some music on and dance. Go for a brisk walk. Practice a quick yoga routine. You can shift your mindset when you move your body.
Eat that cake, but eat it mindfully
If you want to overcome emotional eating, that doesn’t mean you have to deny yourself food. It just means that if you choose to eat, you stay present and mindful. So, sit at your table (never stand!), and eat slowly so you can really concentrate on all the flavors going on. This kind of eating can really lift you up, rather than make matters worse.