Let’s create balance in your body.
Stress and emotional eating can look very different for everyone. Some are grabbing for chocolate, and as much of it as they can get their hands on, others may be all day grazers. Some reach for sugar, others are salty and crunchy. What ever your “poison” is we can all probably agree it isn’t an ideal practice, although most of us do it; yes even me! LOL
Before you can actually tackle HOW to stop the mindless munching, grabbing and snacking you must first tune-in and recognize your patterns and triggers for the emotional/stress eating. Your WHY as I like to call it. This is all great you say, but if I knew I wouldn’t be doing it! How do I recognize these patterns? Don’t worry I’ve got your back!
It is important to remember tuning-in can take time and practice and there is no perfect. Some days will look and be easier than others. It is likely you have spent a lot of time not wanting to tune-in to the WHY, which may be the reason for the Stress/emotional eating. That being said, the more you practice, the more you learn about YOU, the easier it gets!
Tips For Recognizing Stress/Emotional Eating:
- When you catch yourself mindlessly grabbing-STOP!
- Start Questioning: Ask yourself what is happening or just happened to make you grab for whatever it is you are grabbing for (or by this time you might even be inserting it into your mouth LOL). Are you upset, sad, worried, angry, anxious, feeling out of control? For example: did you just have an argument with your child, did something stressful happen at work, are you watching the news, are you worrying, do you eat when you feel you can ‘t have a voice? Whatever it is STOP and THINK.
- Taking it broader: Are you missing something else in your life? Do you need more movement, more creativity, more fun/laughter, more connection? *** See link below for The Circle Of Life
- Are you suppressing old feelings with food? Or “stuffing down the emotions”, as they say. These could even be feelings from something as far back as your childhood.
- Is it habit? Do you always eat in front of the TV? Did something good happen and you feel you deserve a reward, i.e. food? This often shows up as a comfort from childhood; maybe you were often given treats for doing something good as a child. Do you always walk in the door and open the fridge or pantry door? Look for patterns/habits.
Now that you are recognizing patterns and emotions what can you do about it? Don’t worry, I’m still here for you!
Calm Your Emotions (old and/or new):
- Ditch caffeine & refined sugars– these both increase cravings, deplete nutrients from your body, wreak havoc on hormones, and increase cortisol levels. To do this with minimal detox symptoms you must properly nurture your body and give it a healthier fuel. Increase your healthy fat intake, be sure to include some at each meal (coconut oil, avocado, avocado oil, nuts and seeds, full fat coconut milk etc), quality protein, and eat only REAL food.
- Drink WATER! Good ole plain water– This helps regulate your internal body temp and keeps your cells and brain healthy & hydrated so they can work optimally and help stabilize mood! Water also flushes toxins! I recommend at least 1/2 your body weight in oz/day.
- Replace snacks with tea– Peppermint and chamomile tea are amazing for calming nerves, dandelion tea is great for detoxing and support the liver. Looking for a sweet tea to help with cravings- try cinnamon or Yogi Detox Tea.
- Quick Write– find your voice using a quick write. This is NOT journaling. This is an exercise where you literally start writing as quickly as possible, without a lot of thought, without worrying about grammar or punctuation. Just write. Get it ALL out! The mad, the sad, the good, the bad and the ugly, your emotions, all of it! Let. It. FLOW! You will know you are done when nothing else comes out. Stop. Breathe deep breaths. Write 3 things you are grateful for, then do with it whatever you like. Burn it, keep it, throw it away. Whatever feels good to you to help you let go of it. When I first started this I had a notebook by my bed, in the kitchen, and in my car. I promise you, it helps!
- Take a shower or bath– both help bring cortisol levels down immensely. Add some lavender and epsom salt…even better!
- Go for a walk outside; ALONE- I mean don’t even bring the dog. Just go. Just YOU. Take deep breaths in and out. Walk until you feel better
- LAUGH! Let go! Do something silly!– With your family or even alone. I think often as adults we take ourselves and life so seriously! We are here to enjoy life! Do it! If it’s been awhile it might feel awkward at first but believe me you won’t regret it! **I challenge you to pick one new song everyday for a full week and dance! Dance in the shower, dance with your family, dance alone, dance naked. Just dance! It is absolutely incredible what it can do for your mood!
- Yoga– gentle and slow flow are amazing for calming nerves and reducing cortisol
- Breath Deep throughout your day– Your body can not digest, heal, or work properly when cortisol levels are high. Bring them down by breathing deeply throughout your day
Stress and emotional eating can be very sensitive subjects, but the truth is we all do it at some point in our lives. Moving forward, being willing to look and recognize your triggers is half the battle, and now you have some tools (and recipes)in your pocket to help guide you through too!
Click the link below for your Healthier recipes for treats, dinners and drinks!
Click the link below to check out the Circle of Life I use with my clients to help show where they could put more attention into their lives to help bring more balance. 🙂