Advertisement

The Weight Loss Shift: Be More, Weigh Less

We’ve all blamed our weight gain on emotional eating. The truth, however, is that emotional eating is not the exclusive domain of the overweight. It’s universal.

Your Emotions Are Here to Teach You Lessons, Not Make You Fat

We’ve all blamed our weight gain on emotional eating. The truth, however, is that emotional eating is not the exclusive domain of the overweight. It’s universal.

We all eat foods for emotional reasons. We reach for one food because it reminds us of our childhoods, for another because it makes us feel safe or secure. We stock up on our favorite feel-good foods when we’re sick or trying to mend a broken heart. We eat when we’re sad and when we’re happy and in celebration.

If emotional eating is such a normal part of our lives, the question becomes: Why do some people gain weight when they do it while others don’t?

The difference is not in what or when we eat. It’s in how we eat, and how we deal with the underlying emotions causing us to eat.

Both thin and overweight people may use a pint of ice cream to deal with a break up, but they do so very differently. While overweight people may dig into the ice cream when they’re already full, thin people will wait until they are hungry to eat it. Then, unlike overweight people who often rush through the treat, berating themselves for their lack of willpower, thin people will be present with the food as they eat, taking their time with it and savoring each feel-good bite. Finally, when it’s done, it’s done, no follow-up serving of guilt or judgment.

When we eat out of emotional hunger without any physical hunger, we introduce negativity into the experience from the very beginning. Right away, we acknowledge that we are ignoring our body, which we don’t like, and then we proceed to make ourselves physically uncomfortable. Our discomfort causes us to withdraw from the eating experience, making it largely unconscious. When we do this, we also withdraw from our emotions. Then, because we haven’t been present, we do not get the feel-good experience we were expecting, and we look for more. Suddenly, the pint of ice cream turns into a pint-and-a-half of ice cream, plus a bag of chips, and ten cookies.

Once we snap out of our emotional binge, we feel overly full, guilty, and judgmental of ourselves. In the end, we feel worse than we did when we started. Instead of feeling like we’ve taken care of ourselves, we feel betrayed. Instead of loved, we feel pained. And, we are still left to deal with the emotion that caused us to want the ice cream in the first place, which means the entire process inevitably will repeat itself, unless we figure out how to break the cycle. Learning how to effectively handle painful emotions is one way to do this.

leave comments
0
Did you like this? Share with your family and friends.
Michelle Hastie
Related Topics: Weight Loss

Advertisement

Advertisement

comments powered by Disqus

Advertisement

Advertisement

DiggDeliciousNewsvineRedditStumbleTechnoratiFacebook