Have you ever made room for dessert even though you’re already full? Out of nowhere in the middle of doing something important, you start feeling hungry? Do you feel hungry before any important meeting? If yes, then you should check your emotional status as this might be due to emotional hunger!
What Is Emotional Hunger or Emotional Eating?
Emotional hunger or emotional eating is the practice of consuming large quantities of food, usually ‘comfort’ or junk foods in response to feelings instead of hunger. Emotional eating is a maladaptive coping strategy used by many of us to deal with negative emotions. Emotional eating can be caused by many reasons which include stress, tension, depression, boredom, and sometimes due to excitement.
Under high stress, your biological age can be 30 times higher than your calendar age. Modern life is full of frustrations, deadlines, and demands. For many people, stress has become a way of life. When stress becomes overwhelming, it can damage your health, mood, relationships and quality of life.
Stress also affects our food preferences. Emotional distress increases the intake of food high in fat and sugar, and you sleep excessively under stress. Also, some people consume alcohol and all this leads to gaining weight around your abdomen and unfortunately, abdominal obesity puts you at risk for several lifestyle diseases such as diabetes, hypertension and heart related issues.
In stress, adrenal glands release a hormone called cortisol, which makes you crave for carbohydrates, sugar and fatty foods. Food is soothing due to the chemical changes it creates in your body. Chocolate is an excellent example. When junk food is calling your name, it’s possible to put boundaries on your emotional eating habits. Ready to break free from stress eating?
The Solution To Beat Emotional Eating
- When you’re tempted to snack for emotional reasons, try moving instead. Just walk for 10 minutes.
- 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 and slowly breathe in and out.
- Sip black tea: A study in the journal of Psychopharmacology found that subjects who consumed black tea, experienced a 47% drop in their cortisol levels.
- Try self-massage: It can be as simple as sitting down, rubbing your feet, one at a time, over the top of the heel, until you feel relaxed.
You’ll eat better and healthier foods if you don’t let your emotions guide your food choices! So be mindful about your choices. For more on stress, you can check Healthy Reads. To help you cope with emotional hunger or help you manage stress better, reach out to a GOQii Coach by subscribing for personalized health coaching here: https://goqiiapp.page.link/bsr
Do leave your thoughts in the comments below!