When we say lower stress levels to burn fat and break the cycle of weight gain, it’s due to the fact that stress alters eating habits by a great deal and most of us tend to crave for comfort food when we are under stress and anxious. Emotional dependency on food to get you out of stressful situations is a major roadblock when you are trying to lose weight because everyday stressors can make you turn to high-calorie, unhealthy, and junk food that would make losing weight extremely difficult. Therefore, it’s important to straighten out emotional eating because not only to lose weight but also to get a healthier version of yourself, both physically and mentally. Elaborating further on emotional/stress eating, under anxious and stressful situations, most of us turn towards foods that’s sweet, salty, or filled with unhealthy fats, that though help to calm the nerves, they are extremely bad for the body. When we are having a bad day, biting into a slice of pizza or eating up a full tub of blueberry ice cream may feel so good, but within a short time, you would feel the need to have another slice of that pizza and a few more scoops of that yummy blueberry ice cream. With stress eating, we are caught up in the “eat-repeat” cycle and unable to differentiate between eating in response to hunger and eating in response to an emotional or stressful situation. It increases our blood sugar and we feel good, but then we experience a sudden drop. That drop makes you even more moody and you will want even more sugary snacks.” In this post, we list down some effective ways to conquer emotional eating.
How Emotional Eating Works Leads to Weight Gain?
Stress eating or emotional eating is a situation where someone eats to feel good, to cope up with trauma, to vent out anger, to deal with stress, than to satisfy hunger. The food we usually pick up in such situations is high-calorie stuff, mostly sugary delights, hight-fat, basically unhealthy food that leads to rapid weight gain. Food that’s high in sugar has a direct impact on the brain. When you eat such food, the brain releases certain “feel-good chemicals” such as endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine that helps to temporarily elevate the mood and calm down nerves. The problem is that this kind of food also causes sharp insulin spikes, providing instant energy but the subsequent drop in blood sugar level can leave one fatigued and craving for more food all over again. You start to depend more and more on such unhealthy food to deal with jittery nerves. In short, people resort to emotional eating to feel better, relieve stress, and cope up with traumatic situations.
Below, we have listed out 6 effective tricks to conquer emotional eating:
1. Find Alternative Distractions: To cut the obsession with food, try focussing on some activity that would help you relax, like painting, reading a book, or giving yourself a manicure. Anything that would distract you to destress and relax.
2. Endorphin-Releasing Tips: Endorphins are chemical messengers released from the body which alleviate stress and pain, and boost your mood. Though junk food can do that in a jiffy, we are looking at other healthy ways to do so, and exercising for 30 minutes or more can easily do that. Here are some other ways – meditate, indulge in aromatherapy with lavender and citrus fragrances, listen to some awesome music, or just take a hot bath!
3. Keep Unhealthy and Junk Food out of Reach: Keeping a snack jar in the pantry or lots of chocolates and ice cream in the refrigerator can be the easiest routes to beat the stress, and please don’t blame your weak will power later on for not keeping you away from the these goodies. Stop shopping for junk and processed food, and do not bring high-calorie food into the home, neither place them within your sight because “out of reach is definitely out of mind.”
4. Eat on Schedule: Not eating on a schedule can lead to frequent snacking and random eating, and increase the tendency to indulge in emotional eating. Check out the right kind of eating schedules on the Rati Beauty app for weight loss that are easy to stick to.
5. Fight Boredom: Do make a list of activities that you absolutely enjoy doing and none of them should revolve around food, not even baking. When you are plain bored, sort out your mails, organize the wardrobe, read a book, call your friends, play games, you can also paint your nails.
6. Seek Professional Help: Last but not the least, when things get out of control, do seek professional help to deal with such a situation.