I help make it EASY for the busy woman make healthier food and lifestyle changes, so that she can feel more CONFIDENT in her body and show up RADIANTLY and BOLDLY in other areas of her life. Read more...
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It is speculated that some parts of the brain are rewarded from eating comfort/junk foods. Emotional eating is the consumption of food - usually high-carbohydrate, high-calorie foods with low nutritional value - in response to emotions instead of hunger. Genuine hunger builds gradually, results from an empty stomach and can be satisfied by a number of different foods. Emotional hunger is quick and urgent, mostly triggered by a specific event or mood, and results in cravings for a specific food. It also involves eating an unusually large amount of food, eating at unusual times of day (e.g. midnight), feeling guilty after emotional eating, and hiding empty containers of food. Children, teens, and adults may be emotional eaters. It can happen due to feelings of sadness, depression, stress, or loneliness; using food as a reward e.g. chocolate bar at the end of a hard day; or using food as a distraction from addressing actual problems. In some people, emotional eating stems from childhood experiences, such as being raised to connect food with feelings instead of sustenance, particularly if the individual experienced poverty or of food was used as a reward or punishment. The foods commonly craved are ice cream, cookies, chocolate, chips, fries, and pizza. A hunger scale is often used to address emotional eating. The levels are 1—Starving, weak, dizzy; 2—Very hungry, cranky, low energy, lots of stomach growling; 3—Pretty hungry, stomach is growling a little; 4—Starting to feel a little hungry; 5—Satisfied, neither hungry nor full; 6—A little full, pleasantly full; 7—A little uncomfortable; 8—Feeling stuffed; 9—Very uncomfortable, stomach hurts; 10—So full you feel sick. It is also recommended to identify the emotional eating triggers by keeping a food journal, and changing the usual response to triggers by taking relaxation breaks, taking time to actually address bothering issues, or calling a friend to chat and taking walks for distraction. Untreated emotional overeating can lead to obesity, keep one from losing weight, and food addiction. The help of health care professionals such as pediatricians, family doctors, nurses, psychiatrists, clinical psychologists, social workers, and licensed counselors may be sought to address emotional eating. Particularly, seeking the help of a therapist specializing in cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), can encourage the emotional eater to discover and expose negative and unproductive ways of thinking, and teaches them to replace these thinking patterns with more helpful ones.