Every emotional eating web page on most of the bigger health sites say pretty much the same thing and most of it isn’t that helpful.
The Expert Tips
1- Learn to differentiate between physical hunger and emotional cravings.
Yeah sure, that’s something to notice and it is good to be aware of but most of the time it doesn’t do much to stop anyone from going ahead and raiding the pantry anyway.
2- Call a friend to make you feel better.
Absolutely. Reaching out to family and friends is a great thing to do and something that most of us need to do more of. I don’t think however that your friend wants you to call them every night, while you think of something to talk about for an hour or two. Essentially you’re asking them to be your crutch.
3- Play with your dog or look through a photo album.
Again, great things to do. Your dog will love you for it and you’ll bond with them. But after a day or two of this, the urge to go to the fridge will overpower your desire to play with your pooch or look through that old family album for the 17th time.
4- Take a walk
Awesome thing to take up. The problem is that you’ll have to walk every evening so unless you’re planning on making a lifestyle change this won’t work. Even if you do walk every evening the unregulated emotions are still there and will find another outlet.
5- Squeeze a stress ball
That could work but you’ll end up with forearms bigger than Popeye’s for the amount of time you have to spend squeezing it.
6- Dance to your favorite song
Music is transcendent and something we have to appreciate more. Incidentally, if you are out for your evening walk to avoid eating and see a bunch of people dancing in their living rooms as you walk by you know they are doing the same thing you are.
7- Have a hot cup of tea
Yeah right. Pretend that scones and biscuits won’t magically appear beside the tea. They always tend to find a way there and don’t care that you just read an expert tip on how to avoid them.
8- Take a bubble bath with candles
A lot of women like doing this and it’s great to relax in this way to wind down in the evening. But again it’ll have to be daily so excuse me as I go and buy stock in lavender, scented bubble bath companies.
9- Wrap yourself in a warm blanket
Be sure to have your partner help so that you are bundled up so tight you can’t get up and walk to the fridge. Huh, this suggestion’s actually pretty good.
10 – Read a good book
As opposed to a bad one of course. Reading is great and I’m all for it. But unless it’s a page turner (again every night) your attention will waver to the kitchen and you’ll feel antsy and pulled toward the area where the food is.
11- Watch a comedy
In the era of Netflix this can actually be done every night. I’d suggest watching the comedian known as Fluffy who talks about cake and donuts throughout the show.
12- Explore the outdoors
Another thing we need to do more of. Being outside is great and I’d recommend it to everyone as the benefits are numerous. The problem is that people tend to overeat at nighttime, and we’re not going to go outside every evening to “explore” … unless it’s to explore our neighbor’s backyard BBQ.
13- Play an instrument
Pretty cool. Whenever you feel the urge to eat, pick up a guitar instead and see how trying to learn it gives you the same satisfaction as eating a tray of hot brownies. I wonder if the triangle made the list of instruments these experts recommended?
14- Take up scrap booking
Excellent. You can cut out all of the pictures of the yummy foods you’re planning on enjoying over the holidays and make a huge collage of them. No worries about getting triggered to binge or anything. You’re also going to need to buy and store A LOT of notebooks.
15- Be mindful of what you are about to eat
The assumption is that many emotional eaters don’t realize they are indulging. Kind of like not knowing how you got pregnant. I guess next time you need to be more mindful.
16- Savor your food
This is a good suggestion again as we usually eat fast and don’t end up enjoying it. The problem is that we are eating fast due to anxiety and trying hard to savor the food means trying to win out against an anxiety response. Possible in the short term but it does nothing in the long run.
17- Make daily exercise a priority
Yeah, do that. Just like you should save 20% of your money and meditate 1 hour per day, do some yoga before bed, spend more time with your family, educate yourself more, volunteer for a good cause, learn a new skill and make sure you get to bed early. We all have time of course.
18 – Sleep 8 hours per night
If you have anxiety, and what emotional eater doesn’t, then this can be a challenge. You simply can’t decide to just do it.
The list goes on but you get it. If you take all of these suggestions to heart you’ll be an ardent walker, guitar player, master scrap booker, comedy connoisseur and prune. Among other things.
There’s nothing bad about any of these suggestions. Most of them are beneficial for you. The problem is that they don’t help much with emotional eating. They can mitigate a binge here and there but overall the problem has to be tackled in a different way.
Find out how simple it can be with the free guide below.
THE EATING LOVE GUIDE (FREE)
The Eating Love Guide has helped many people regain control of their eating patterns, resulting not only in weight loss but also better health and improved self-esteem. To read it online, click here.
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