Here is Part 2 on healthy lifestyles and looking at the importance of how and why we eat…
Why We May Overeat
Emotional eating plays a big part in the overeating habits of many people.
A large percentage of overeating is caused by emotions, furthermore research by the American Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Laboratory, revealed that that emotional eating is similar to how a drug addict feels when craving drugs – I certainly can personally vouch for having a historical addiction to chocolate or should I say the sugar-high it gives! Scientists in recent years have attempted to explain the link between food and our moods and have found strong links.
If when you are feeling lonely, frustrated, angry, sad or bored you may find you reach out for comfort foods that help to alleviate these feelings, in these cases you may be feeding your emotions more than simply giving energy to your body.
Following this you can end up feeling guilty or ashamed because of the overeating, which then builds a cycle to eat more and bury those feelings, creating a vicious cycle of; feeling bad - eating - feeling bad - eating etc.
What needs to be understood is what the person is really hungry for?
One helpful tip is to keep a daily log to track why and when you eat. Doing this helps to discover what causes you to eat. Was it because of a conflict or argument? Were you feeling sad or angry about something? By keeping track of your eating habits you will soon discover a pattern.
If a pattern has been established, the next step is to create an action plan to start dealing with it.
Although emotional eating is a symptom of the unhealthy eating habit, the underlying cause (which may be anger, depression, sadness, etc.) can then be dealt with, because you are then aware of what triggers the habit. Building new coping strategies for dealing with stressful or emotionally difficult situations will halt the unhealthy eating behaviour and ultimately help with finding a healthier way of eating and coping with life.
These patterns of behaviour can also apply to other substances besides food. There may be similar emotional triggers for habitual overindulgence in tobacco products, caffeine and alcohol.
There is so much help available for people to deal with habits like these. Success in all of them is often dependent on the individual knowing that someone out there supports and understands what they are going through.
My role as DeClutter Angel is to provide emotional back-up and motivation to help my clients on the path to success. I can also help with visualisation, distraction and meditation techniques.
If you are struggling with any area of your life, contact me for a free telephone consultation and I will see how I can help.
Thanks for reading, and I hope you find this DeClutter Angel, small steps BIG IMPACT blog on 'Why We May Overeat' a nutritious food for your thoughts…
Look out for part 3 of DeClutter Angel’s Look at Healthy Lifestyles on The Importance of Exercise.
For more information, please contact Karen Taylor: 07948 529587