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Do you consider yourself to be an “emotional eater”? Or have you struggled with this in the past?

Food can be a crutch for a lot of people. It’s easy, it’s at the center of every celebration or event, and it can get out of control, if not handled properly. The awesome thing is that emotional eating is a bad habit that CAN be broken! I promise. We see people make huge turn arounds ALL. THE. TIME.

I heard from a mentor of mine years ago that it’s not smart to make decisions based on our emotions. For example, have you ever been in a heated argument with someone you love and said something you really didn’t mean? And when you said that thing, you immediately regretted it and questioned where it even came from?! That’s because it’s said that “when your emotions are high, your intelligence is low”. We don’t always make the best choices when we are emotional. We really aren’t in our right minds in those conditions!

Emotional eating is a lot more common than you may think. Several people that we speak to have spent YEARS taking care of everyone and everything else but themselves (kids, grandkids, careers, etc), and they have let food become a crutch to lean on at the end of a stressful day. After a crazy day at work or with the kids, maybe your “drug” of choice is chocolate or pizza or soda or wine or chips or ice cream, etc. Whatever your cravings are, there are ways to break the habit of emotional eating!

  1. Know that you are stronger than your cravings
    – Be open minded about the fact that you DO have the power to say NO. Just because it’s “the way you grew up” or it’s “something you just have to have”, doesn’t mean that’s the truth! YOU can create your own truth. Your best self deserves it!!
  2. Give yourself a few minutes before indulging
    – Ask yourself: “do I really need this? is this adding value to my life/body?”
    – Take 2 minutes. Literally, set a timer on your phone and ask how you feel after 2 minutes.
    – Chug a glass of water!!
  3. Deep breathing
    – It may seem silly, but I think it’s even sillier to act childish when handling ourselves around food! Take a few deep breaths and don’t let your emotions get the best of you!
    – Use a tool to help you, such as the “Calm” app, which takes you through guided breathing (it’s also great if you have trouble falling asleep! I used to use this before parenthood, when my mind would race at night!)
  4. Journaling
    – Pay attention to the actual trigger that is causing your emotional eating. Take that time and write your thoughts on paper!
    – What is causing you to emotionally eat? How can you channel your energy in a POSITIVE way?
  5. Exercise!
    – Moving your body is SUCH a great release of negative emotions and energy!
    – It doesn’t have to be lifting a ton of weights or running 5 miles; it can be as simple as just doing 10 jumping jacks, some pushups, or taking your dogs for a walk!
  6. Be accountable to someone 
    – This one is HUGE. When we are accountable to someone other than ourselves, sometimes it makes it harder to make those poor choices when it comes to food.
    – Invest in a Food Coach that you check in with once a week! That’s exactly what we do at KW Fitness. What’s great about our Food Coaches is that they’re not here to yell at clients or make them feel like children; they’re here to hold them accountable and talk them through the tough times, especially if food is an emotional rollercoaster.

Food is meant to nourish us, to be enjoyed, and to make us feel good- not guilty. We need it to THRIVE!

One of my favorite quotes in my memory bank is actually a quote that I read in a book my brother was reading in a nutrition class in college: “The food we eat should make us want to conquer the world, not take a nap!”

What ONE positive change can you implement this week to help overcome emotional eating?

Thanks for taking the time to read this and HAPPY EATING!!