I slept in today until around 11am. I hardly ever use to sleep in that long but its all I ever seem to do on the weekends now. The temperature has eased a bit which is a nice change. A bit of a longer walk today, I’d say it was around 20mins.
I had a very lazy sunday, as well as 3 chocolates and half a bag of corn chips. But true to my word I have done some research on emotional eating. Here are some tips from DrOz;
How can I Stop Emotional Eating?
Thankfully, you can break the habit of emotional eating. It takes practice and finding creative, new ways to calm and successfully soothe yourself. The goal is to rewire your brain to identify non-eating behaviors as comforting.
Step One: Be Aware.
Much of emotional eating is so unconscious that it happens automatically or below your awareness. Before you jump into changing this behavior, keep a journal. Write down where and when you stress eat. The office? Late at night? When you are alone? Are there any patterns that you notice? Every time you eat, ask yourself how physically hungry you are on a scale from 1-10. If you are a 6-10, it’s likely that you are physically hungry. A 3, for example, would signify that you are stress eating.
Step Two: Replace.
If you take out stress eating, you have to put something in its place. Write down a concrete list of all the healthy, non-calorie related activities that give you a quick pick-me-up on a tough day. Here a few simple examples.
- One-Minute Fix : Sip black tea. A study in the journal of Psychopharmacology found that subjects who drank black tea experienced a 47% drop in their cortisol levels, the stress hormone that makes you crave food, compared to 27% among the subjects who drank a placebo.
- One-Minute Fix: If a foot rub would hit the spot better than a snack, try self-message. It can be as simple as sitting down, taking off your shoe and placing your foot over a tennis ball. Rub your feet, one at a time, over the top of the ball until they feel relaxed and soothed. According to the study in the International Journal of Neuroscience , self-massage slows your heart rate and lowers your level of cortisol .
- One-Minute Fix: Mindless eating soothes raw nerves by numbing out emotions. Munching gives you a moment to zone out from daily commotion and stress. Instead, actively choose a healthy way to clear your mind. Try a quick breathing exercise. Slowing down your breathing can trick your body into thinking you are going to sleep, which in turn relaxes your body. Close your eyes. Stare at the blackness of your eyelids. Slowly breathe in and out. Count each time you inhale and exhale. Continue until you get to 10.
Step Three: Practice!
There are many ways to calm yourself without calories, such as journaling, meditation techniques, connecting with others, self-message, distraction, guided imagery and ways to pamper your senses. Try out these techniques when you aren’t craving food so you get them down pat before you really need them! You wouldn’t want to learn how to swim in rough water. Nor do you want to learn the art of soothing yourself without food on a very stressful day. With practice, you can end emotional eating.
So putting this into practice is my next step. I’m looking forward to a new start Monday and the beginning of my fitness kick!