Emotional Eating

If you ever catch yourself sitting in a car at a gas station or even just on your couch in front of the TV with empty boxes of pizza and donuts in front of you then you know what binge eating is all about.  The feeling that the amount of food matters a lot more than the type or taste of food that goes in your mouth means that you are falling into mindless eating.  This leads to unwanted inches around your hips, thighs and waistline.  Use these tips to help you the next time you feel like using food to drown your sorrows:

1.  We all deserve down time, even if only for 5 minutes during the day.  If you expect to always be ‘on’ then you will fail miserably.  The routine and frantic pace of your life needs to be followed by relaxing and stress free time everyday. You may find yourself binge eating as a way to find time for yourself that is uninterrupted.  Be sure to find a way to incorporate daily downtime (a necessity, not a luxury!) that works with your lifestyle that is free of stressful people and environments.

2.      If you find yourself surrounded by candy bar wrappers and popcorn bags, become aware of the part of you that is separate from the activity, the part that is witnessing what you are doing.  Pay attention to your own voice that is in your head that knows that three snicker bars and two ice cream bars is a sign of binge eating and slow down.  Actually tasting and enjoying the food that you are eating will help you eat less of it the next time you want to stuff your mouth.

3.  A binge has the power to stop time and everything that could be disturbing you:  Worries about money, the nit-picking about your kids or arguments with a loved one. It is a way to enter a world where nothing exists except you and what is going into your mouth.  Plan for this time in your life!  Have scheduled plunges into oblivion and give yourself permission to check out from the overwhelming pace of life. Schedule massages, meditation, reading or just doing…well, nothing!  You deserve the time for yourself.  Its good for your waistline!

Create a food-free version of downtime for yourself.  If it seems strange for you to rest or do something you love to do, then it is time to take a second look at how you have scheduled your time.  After all, you’re not a machine, you are a human being and you don’t come with a power cord to keep going even when your batteries run out. Re-design your life to make time for yourself and you will find that binge eating doesn’t have a place in your life anymore.  Give yourself permission to eat chocolate, ice cream, and cookies—eat them in moderation, eat slowly and enjoy. Every.  Single.  Bite.

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