Reading the title of this article might make someone think I have figured out how to break free of emotional eating. Maybe there is a new found method, a scientific breakthrough, a hidden way just discovered or possibly a new fad invention to help with this problem.
No, there is not a great remedy for this problem that has just been found.
The problem of emotional eating has been an ongoing situation for most of my life. I wish I could say I have conquered bad eating habits, emotional eating, feeling a need to eat when I am not hungry. I am still a “work in progress” in many areas and emotional eating is one of those areas.
Well…where’s the positive spin on this message, you ask?
My own personal story is one of learning, succeeding, falling back into old eating patterns and starting fresh again. Thank goodness there is a chance to start again when failure comes.
Yes, in the midst of happiness and joyfulness and during times of sadness or stress, I have been known to eat when my body wasn’t hungry or in need of nourishment. This is emotional eating. I eat when I’m happy, I eat when I’m sad. Does this sound familiar to you? Maybe you or someone you know is trying to gain a handle on emotional eating.
I am happy to share a few things that are helping me break free of emotional eating. I’m not saying I won’t backslide, but right now, these things are working for me.
When my brain begins to give me signals to head to the kitchen cabinet, refrigerator or to stop by a local eatery, there are a few ways I can combat the thoughts and find another direction for my emotions.
- Stop. Before moving another step, stop and breathe. Count to ten, count to twenty if needed. Breathe in, breathe out. Am I really hungry or is this an impulse want?
- Pray. Pause and ask God for help in resisting food that is not necessary for health and nourishment. Conversation with God often leads me to realize my emotions are driving my desire to eat. My body is not in need of food at that moment.
- Take a walk. Outside or inside, walk away from the food. Often a walk helps me relax and focus on something besides eating.
- Contact a friend or family member. Conversation with others helps me remove the focus of emotional eating.
- Remember there are times when failure will come. God gives us many opportunities to begin again. Thank You Lord.
These are only a few ways that help me break free from emotional eating. Do you have ideas to share? Your thoughts may help someone who is struggling with emotional eating. Share in the comments. Thank you.
Melissa Henderson is a writer of inspirational messages through fiction, non-fiction, devotions, guest blogs, articles and more. Her first children’s book “Licky the Lizard: was released in 2018.