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How do you stop emotional eating?



 
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UMBILICAL
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12/27/13 11:14 P

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Go outside



MBURS10
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12/27/13 8:46 P

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My worry is that I am consciously or subconsciously trying to sabotage myself. For me, emotional eating is my "I don't care" response; when stress becomes a problem, I throw my hands up. Emotional eating certainly doesn't make me feel better, but it reinforces whatever negative feelings I'm having. This is going to be my biggest obstacle for sure.



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LOVINGAFRICA
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9/23/13 1:24 P

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I drink a protein shake with added fibre like flax seed or oat bran. Can't look at food for a couple of hours after that.



'You know you are truly alive when you're living among lions.' Karen Blixen, Out of Africa


'The measure of civilized behavior is compassion.' Paul Theroux


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YBROWNING40
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9/23/13 10:43 A

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Great comments. I am also an emotional eater since giving birth to my son. It is really hard to get and stay on track with eating.

The will of God will never take you where the grace of God will not protect you... Unknown

If you always eat what you eat, you will always weigh what you weigh.... Unknown


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LUCKYSTRAWBERRY
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9/10/13 11:48 P

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I have a huge struggle with emotional eating! I have found that chewing mint gum helps me tons! I also try to get my mind on something else. I have had to fight so hard some times, that if I had the time, I'd literally take a nap so I wouldn't be awake feeling stressed and wanting comfort food. I have also went and downed a bottle of water, followed by gum, and it usually helps for those emotional eating battles! :)

- "Obsessed is the word the lazy use to describe the dedicated." -


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ARIZONA33
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9/9/13 9:58 A

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Wow--every time I check back to see if there have been any more suggestions about how to stop emotional eating I am amazed by everyone that has continued to share and their wonderful ideas and insight into what causes emotional eating for them and how they deal with it.

I have discovered something in the last few weeks that for me is making a difference. I have been working on finding the cause/feeling each time I find my self eating for an emotionally triggered reason and then trying to find a permanent solution to filling or fixing that cause/feeling. For example: sometimes my emotional eating is triggered by a sense of loneliness. So, now I am putting myself into positive situations by surrounding myself with lots of positive women. I decided to start a Mary Kay business because of the very positive women that I met recently who are doing this. I figure that even if all I ever get out the business is being with all these fun, interesting and motivated women a few times a week that I have already gained something that fills my life with something that I need...the opportunity to create positive friendships with people that really care about me and the needs that my family and I have. That said, I also want to clear up acne that never seems to go away; so I figure using a great skin care line will be a good start. There are lots of other benefits to starting a business but this thread and SparkPeople is not the place to talk about all of that.

The main thing is I have discovered that it is time to start living my life rather than just being really, really busy in life trying to fill everyone elses needs--work, family, etc. Finding a balance and creating time to really meet my emotional needs in productive and healing ways seems to be the key to starting to deal with and stop my emotional eating in its tracks.

Thank you fellow Sparkers for all your replies, help, ideas and encouragement.



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BLINGQUEEN:O)
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9/6/13 1:37 P

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Stopping emotional eating is really hard. I am assuming the question refers to stopping while I am emotionally eating. Sometimes I actually can. That usually means I have to let emotions flow. Crying and eating is hard and not as satisfying. So I let the emotions flow ` that is a rare event.

BLINGQUEEN:O) sends you {{{{{{{{HUGS}}}}}}}}} can you feel them? :O)


EMPRESSAMQ
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8/19/13 10:37 A

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I believe food is an integral part of our emotional life so I don't try to stop emotional eating per se. I try to experience the emotion and know that food can be a symbol part of that, so I eat something small and appropriate if I wish, track it (because I've tracked food for 20 years) and move on.

If I have to keep eating it becomes not a part of my emotional life but a binge so I take a walk and stop that behavior of starting to binge.

Moving in new directions.


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NANA-B-FITZ
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8/19/13 7:33 A

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Hi all

Sage ---love this statement " Also, when I consistently track my food, I am much less likely to binge eat or emotionally eat something not healthy for me because I don't want to have to see the effect of those mounting calories in my Nutrition Tracker. Tracking helps keep you honest with yourself. I highly recommend it. And, it teaches you and makes you consciously on a daily level of your portion sizes which is definitely a must for losing weight."
I am new here and i have also not wanted to see the calorie count in the tracker LOL.The tracker really does help.

My name is Bella

I am from
New York City


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SAGE150
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8/18/13 5:47 P

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I find that eating breakfast, lunch, and a substantial afternoon snack followed by a simple dinner of protein-packed cereal with a soothing English Breakfast tea topped off with soy milk keeps me balanced. I don't end up eating much at night, and the tea is very soothing. Any time I feel stressed or need comfort, I drink tea, and the warm liquid going down my throat and settling into my belly calms me and brings me back to the reality that I don't need food at that moment to feel better. By the time I am done with my tea, regardless what time of the day I am drinking it, I am much calmer and ready to face whatever I am emotionally upset or stressed about. Also, when I consistently track my food, I am much less likely to binge eat or emotionally eat something not healthy for me because I don't want to have to see the effect of those mounting calories in my Nutrition Tracker. Tracking helps keep you honest with yourself. I highly recommend it. And, it teaches you and makes you consciously on a daily level of your portion sizes which is definitely a must for losing weight.

Co-leader: Latino's Cafe and SABOR: Latin Dance Flavor.
-----------------------------

Today, I will be good to myself.

Processed food is a gateway drug.

Nothing tastes as good as looking great feels.


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PAMLICO-DAZE
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8/17/13 9:30 P

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Exercise helps

Remember to take time to enjoy the journey!


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FATTYBOY230
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8/17/13 9:29 P

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I either sleep or exorcise. Drink lots of water. Take long walks. keep carrots and celery on hand. un buttered pop corn.

When all else fails.... exercise and prayer is the absolute


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WWREFUGEE1942
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8/17/13 8:58 P

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Kravmamagirl, I am getting a lot out of your reference to "Weight Loss Apocalypse", e.g. picture a situation in which you cannot get food (an apocalypse) and notice that you would ration your food, not eat in the morning if you are not hungry and a lot of other times that the diet industry tells us we must eat. I am also interested in the VLCD (very low calorie diet of 500 calories a day) that she talks about. There is a whole lot to learn from Robin Woodall.

We diet to lose weight which is the wrong motivation. Being fat is not the most important problem. The problem is that we are emotional, or profligate eaters. Our society does not teach us to eat less as the moral thing to do, like spending less money and saving money is the morally right thing to do. Our society allows us to continue to eat to satisfy our desires which is wrong. We are wrong when we spend money that we could save. People used to know this but our society no longer teaches thrift as a virtue. I am not saying I can make this change. I am an old time eager eater but I do understand that I should be dieting to eat less because it is the moral thing to do, like spending less money is the moral thing to do.

Edited by: WWREFUGEE1942 at: 8/17/2013 (21:03)

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KRAVMAGAGIRL
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8/17/13 8:28 P

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I haven't read through all 6 pages, just skimmed, so I apologize if this has been recommended before. I have been an emotional binger/eater since I was 17. In January of 2012, I found a vlog by Robin Woodall, and it completely changed my life. It is not easy to overcome, but she will give you the tools you can use to heal and stop emotional eating. I am happy to say I am now 1 year binge/emotional eating free.

She focuses a lot on the hCG protocol, but even ignoring that part of it she is amazing. I read her book "Weight Loss Apocalypse," and am waiting on her 2nd book to be published that will focus more on how to heal versus simply how to listen to hunger.

A youtube video to get you started. She's got tons of vlogs you can watch. :) I hope this helps
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jVCIWZ-WFc4


* * * * * * * * * * *
"Never quit. Never give up. Life is what you make of it, so stand tall and always seek Christ." -Bart Brooks


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BUNNYGIRL53
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8/16/13 10:45 A

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Eating can be the "quick fix" for me. I've started learning to identify the emotion (usually I'm tired or bored) by asking myself if I'm really hungry or is something else going on. I had to get in touch with hunger first because I had lost sight of what "hungry" really is and how it feels.
After a couple of years of doing this I'm pretty good at identifying whether I'm hungry or not. I also think therapy helps if you can't conquer the issue. And sometimes, you have to give yourself permission to comfort yourself in this way.
I also think finding other "comforts" is a good practice: bubble baths or showers, a little walk, listening to music, playing with a pet or child, a massage, etc. These can help you feel just as good or better than when you eat-esp., if you're not really hungry.



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ANNE007
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8/16/13 10:03 A

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Work out. Get on the computer. Play with your kids/dog. Do anything else but eat!



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RIDELIKEAGIRL1
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8/16/13 6:24 A

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I agree with JPRSAVETTE. I leave my apartment too. Although I don't keep any junk food there, emotional eating is destructive to self esteem for me no matter what it is. I have steamed a batch of brussels sprouts in the past and ate the whole batch. Ended up with a stomach ache, and more sad than I was to begin with. I find the comfort zone of my apartment can be both good and bad. Sometimes just getting out can help with feeling better...



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LEAHFELICITY
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8/15/13 10:51 P

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Distract yourself with something else that's soothing. I typically draw or read. It also helps to gulp a glass of water to fill yourself up before you can stuff food in there.

Dog lover, illustrator, and professional sass-mouth extraordinaire!

also at:
leahlucci.tumblr.com
leahfelicity.etsy.com
leahlucci.com


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ELSELTZ
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8/14/13 3:41 P

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I also want to second what EngineerMom said about the role of depression, and the importance of allowing for adequate fat intake in your eating plan.

A big turnaround for me in my relationship with food was when I realized I DON'T have an eating problem. I have a depression/anxiety problem, which I have always used food to self-medicate.

Looking at my lifestyle as a whole to bring my stress level down, prioritize exercize, outside time, Vitamin D, water, sleep and adequate healthy fat has made me much less erratic and anxiety-driven in my emotions.

That has allowed me to separate the emotional stuff from the eating stuff. When you can be proactive dealing with the emotions, it really makes sticking to a sensible eating plan much, much easier.



ELSELTZ
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8/14/13 3:23 P

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What helped me a lot was a book called "the Solution" by Laurel Mellin. She gives a lot of helpful exercises for using what she calls "the Needs Cycle" and "the Limits Cycle". The needs cycle is about using the desire to eat as a call to look inward and see what is really needed. Sometimes it is a physical thing, sometimes it is an emotional thing, like comfort, distraction, celebration, etc. When you identify the need you can meet it more directly (since food doesn't actually help with emotional needs, it just postpones them). When you learn to meet your emotional needs more appropriately, your desire to eat emotionally wanes, because you are channeling those needs in their proper direction.

The limits cycle is about learning to be kind to yourself when you need to say "enough. stop now." or "I must do this thing I don't enjoy in order to take good care of myself, or live authentically, or be responsible for the future." There are always feelings of pain, loss, or discomfort associated with limits -that's why we don't like them! But you can gently learn to feel the pain and find that it will pass on its own.

Certainly, it was not a magical switch that went "ping" and I don't ever eat emotionally anymore. It is a skill, I am learning, but I am a LOT better at it than I used to be.



SHARON5913
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8/14/13 2:32 P

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i'm struggling with this as well, and realized that I have been for a long time, I too am in counseling, and I try to distance myself from food, and have actually made better food choices lately, but I do still have a hard time with this.



SVEVIJ
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8/14/13 8:23 A

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The best way to divert emotional eating is to divert your mind to other things.... Either i play video games when am upset or i hang out with frnds outside or go out for a game of Badminton or Pingpong...The baseline is divert your mind.



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PRINCESSAA12
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8/14/13 7:02 A

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I was a huge emotional eater as well as binge eater. What really helped me break free from emotional eating was Geneen Roth's books (mainly: When you eat at the refrigerator, pull up a chair and Breaking free from compulsive eating). Note that I am not promoting any books. I am just sharing what worked for me.

I applied the principles in the book and emotional eating is now a thing of the past for me. I struggled with it my ENTIRE life and now I'm binge free for 7-8 years. One of the main things I did which was prescribed in the book was to feel the emotions instead of eat them.

When I started feeling my emotions, I realised I did not die. I was still alive, watching myself cry, watching myself upset and watching myself in the midst of crying and shoving food in my mouth. You really need to just be aware and feel your feelings. Eating them will just make you feel worse once you're done with the food, because the feelings won't be gone.

I hope that helps.



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SHUFFMAN126
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8/14/13 6:45 A

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I make sure I'm tuned into the story I'm telling myself about the food I want. If I'm hearing in my head "I'm really stressed out, I NEED to eat a whole box of mac and cheese" that's not what my body wants, my body just wants to be less stressed. I also drink a glass of water. The links to EFT that were posted are great too. I learned EFT a couple years ago for dealing with depression related panic attacks and it is an amazing tool.

A happy person is not a person in a certain set of circumstances, but rather a person with a certain set of attitudes. - Hugh Downs



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SCHEALTHNUTT
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8/13/13 2:39 P

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I just try to be aware of what I'm doing. Usually can stop myself. And somedays I just eat what I want!!!(RARELY) Because sometimes I don't care.



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OCEAN7
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8/13/13 2:04 P

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bubblebaths



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BLONDWUNN
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8/13/13 11:36 A

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Try four things:

1. Refuse to buy junk or non-nutritious foods. (Don't bake gooey treats = disaster.)
2. Keep ready-foods in the frig or on the counter-top such as cleaned carrots, maybe cut-up, fresh broccoli where you could top with a little oil or vinegar, raisins, nuts, seeds, etc.
3. Drink a big glass of water where you've added a couple drops of lemon juice to make it alkaline (keep your tummy happy with less acid).
4. Jump on the treadmill, elliptical trainer, the vacuum cleaner emoticon or any physical activity that will get your mind off your worries for a time.



JPRSAVETTE
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8/13/13 10:43 A

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i physically put food out of my reach...........i leave my apartment


it doesnt matter if you run slowly.........you are still running faster than someone on the couch!!!


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NOBLEEQUESTRIAN
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8/13/13 10:37 A

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I started to focus on something else. I started to crochet continuously rather than eat continuously.



BLUENOSE63
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8/13/13 8:32 A

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I went to therapy and worked it out.



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NENMAR3
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8/13/13 6:41 A

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Thanks for the spiritual inspiration.



NENMAR3
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8/13/13 6:34 A

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I appreciate the link to the "tapping" info. Thanks for the help.



NENMAR3
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8/13/13 6:33 A

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Thanks for the phrase. I will refer to it and maybe this time I will experience more success at saying yes to my packed lunch instead of choosing fast food! I am hopeful.





JLEMUS1
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8/12/13 1:00 P

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I carry a little message with me that states: Junk food youv'e craved for an hour or the body you craved for a lifetime, your decision!! I read it and keep on trucking I have a glass of water and do other stuff to not think about it.

The strength of the wolf is the pack and the strength of the pack is the wolf!!!



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RICHARJ
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8/12/13 11:16 A

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so tough but doable if you don't stop tryiig...I still have a treat every now and then when I'm stressed but somehow I manage to stop myself after one piece and don't do the whole thing. I am a definite work in progress though...no doubt

Today may there be Peace within. May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be.
May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of Faith in Yourself and others. May you use the gifts that you have received & pass on the Love that has been given to you.


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SUNSHINE65
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8/11/13 5:18 P

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I like to use FasterEFT when the emotional eating comes up. I identify the emotion, issue, problem and make my feelings as strong as possible. Then I tap on it, then check it, then tap again. I do it over and over until I have quieted the emotion. Works. Does take discipline, but happiness is the result. Here's a link:

www.youtube.com/watch?v=hGZ1VuJ21Uk

If the grass looks greener on the other side of the fence it's probably astro turf.


MIMICOTO
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8/11/13 11:36 A

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In my late teens and early 20s (nearly 30 years ago now!) I struggled with emotional eating. What turned things around for me was systematically changing the behavior patterns by getting in touch with 'real' hunger, learning what 'full' felt like and basically changing my relationship with food - turning it back into 'fuel'.....

I did this very simply by following the program outlined in a powerful little book called 'Eating Awareness Training' by Molly Groger. It is out of print now, but still available used on Amazon. It details a deceptively simple 6 week program that 'teaches' the reader to eat for hunger, become aware of their bodies and employ visualization to guide the process a bit.

Today I think this is called 'mindful eating', but the simplicity of this approach fundamentally changed my eating....30 years later I have ZERO food issues, am slim, fit and healthy - mentally and physically.


Edited by: MIMICOTO at: 8/11/2013 (11:36)
~Mimi~

Our lives are a sum total of the choices we have made - Wayne Dyer

Leader, Go for the Goal


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BLUEBIRDSFLY
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8/11/13 9:11 A

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I cut out the foods that I turn to when I am emotional. I cut out sugar over six months ago and emotional eating is no longer an issue. Nor is food in general

Tell your heart that the fear of suffering is worse than the suffering itself. And that no heart has ever suffered when it goes in search of its dreams, because every second of the search is a secondís encounter with God and with eternity"
-Paulo Coelho
Alchemist







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TENNISJIM
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8/11/13 7:16 A

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I don't know how I do it...I just do it.



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SUNSET09
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8/11/13 7:13 A

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realize that it goes againse my goal and replace it with something that helps



 
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SUNSHINE65
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8/10/13 11:39 P

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Here's a fantastic way to address the underlying issues: Go to YouTube and enter: Healing Magic Weight Loss. Healing Magic is the FasterEFT channel. FasterEFT is a powerful process to address those pesky subconscious issues that plague us and weigh us down (and keep us fat!). My favorite vid right now is: 84 #2 Self Image & Love Yourself
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BBkPwmJE0j
c&list=PLaZdMSn4REfcPdc7ucCz517neEasYQ
Y7l

Be sure to let me know after you have tried them!

I can't make the link work, so copy and paste. SparkPeople chops up the URL sometimes in ways that your browser doesn't understand.

Edited by: SUNSHINE65 at: 8/10/2013 (23:44)
If the grass looks greener on the other side of the fence it's probably astro turf.


ASHLEYGILLE
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8/10/13 8:13 A

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This exact topic is addressed in the Sept./Oct. 2013 issue of Weight Watchers magazine (pg. 4) by WW CEO David Kirchhoff.

"So what to do about emotional eating? There are two options, though they are not mutually exclusive:
1. Find something other than food to use for self-medication.
2. Acknowledge and address the underlying source of stress."

I know, easier said than done, but with self-examination/evaluation, close attention to your feelings, some trial & error, and practice, it can be done. Maybe consider picking up the magazine or finding a good book in the self-help section of your local library/book store.

Best of luck to you. With time and patience, and some hard work, you can do it! :)





PJLIBRARYLADY
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8/10/13 7:42 A

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Until I can figure out how to stop emotional eating, I concentrate on adding as many other healthy habits as I can to compensate for the unhealthy eating: I exercise, eat lots of fresh fruits and veggies, wear a seatbelt and a bike helmet, avoid alcohol, tobacco, and caffeine, and I maintain a healthy social and spiritual life.

While I hope to someday overcome my emotional eating, I can at least tell myself I am doing positive things!

PJ from Wisconsin

Run and not be weary, walk and not faint....


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HELZIE
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8/10/13 7:34 A

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Short term, I distract myself with whatever I'm feeling- If I'm angry (yes, I'm an angry eater!) then I'll do something high energy like boxing. If I'm sad, I'll have a good cry and then have a bubble bath or something equally nice. You just have to find a solution to whatever you are feeling, then afterwards you feel doubly great because you didn't give in. It helps in the long run as after a while you don't automatically go to food, you can find something else.



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RETREAD57
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8/10/13 6:21 A

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THese days I think about how I am a dancer and a runner, and my body is my friend and vehicle for expression



SPARKLER1001
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8/10/13 2:58 A

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I try tostop concentrating on JUST LOSING WEIGHT....and Think of how healthy I would be if I did take off the weight I needed to and how GREAT I would look inside and out..
change your thoughts - change your mind set - I won't be so tempted to reach for more food if I can concentrate on being HEALTHY!
Goes for anythin I want to do... emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Edited by: SPARKLER1001 at: 8/10/2013 (06:58)
Light, Love, Power, Presence. Light,Love,Power,Presence


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FIRYMIST35
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8/9/13 1:17 P

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Exercise, gardening or housework will work for me it I'm tempted to eat out of boredom or frustration.



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IAMJOYFUL2
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8/9/13 12:33 P

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With awareness -- one meal at a time, one day at a time.
Discipline is remembering what one really wants.
Planning a head is also a definite must do.

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.
Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts.
Drop judgment and pick up love.
If you can move a grain of sand a day, eventually you will move a mountain.
Crappy choices bring crappy feelings.
Can'ts are joy limiters.


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SHARON5913
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8/9/13 11:06 A

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Mint chocolate chip gum is awesome for me. If I have no gum, then I try to get away from the food. Go outside, go to bed, go for a walk. emoticon



SLIMTHICK2
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8/8/13 9:22 P

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clueless but some of these suggestions are quite good.



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RENATA144
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8/8/13 9:10 P

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Go to bed.

I Love to collect SPARKPOINTS !!!


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JUJU_BEAR
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8/8/13 6:07 P

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I experience this a lot. So far I have had to get up and walk away from the area. Which works in my working environment because I find something else that has to be done. Or I take a couple bites of my lunch. And then sit and breathe. By then I usually am able to regroup.

_______________________________________________________________________________So today I experienced a prime example of how to stop emotional eating. My co-workers were chatting it up amongst themselves on how to get the company to buy them lunch. I walk off to handle a task. And while I am gone they disappear. Of course it was confirmed that the company did buy them lunch. Because they blatantly said "thank you for buying me lunch" within ear shot. :(

Immediately feelings of rejection, self doubt, etc. etc. rear it's ugly head. I just want to get the bleep out of there. Of course I haven't had lunch yet. Because I was dealing with stuff while they were gone. I'm feeling ravenous. I didn't know what to eat because, of course I didn't pack a lunch today.

I didn't order a pizza for myself. I didn't get that huge burger and fries. Instead I got a tuna salad slim sandwich. And splurged with an oatmeal raisin cookie. Delivered to me! Sure it was still more calories than I wanted. (now that I am sane) But at that moment I was willing to go off the deep end.

Then I wrote in my journal about my feelings and how I handled it. Believe it or not, I didn't shed a tear. I didn't go in search of chocolate. So maybe that's I should do.. write in my journal. Find my sanity before I open my mouth.

Good luck to you all.

Edited by: JUJU_BEAR at: 8/29/2013 (17:44)

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SCHEALTHNUTT
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8/8/13 3:04 P

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Just be mindful when overeating starts. Stop before it gets real u=out of hand emoticon



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HOPE30LOSE
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8/8/13 1:48 P

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Pray,Walk

Trust in the Lord


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HYPERBYTE1
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8/8/13 1:12 P

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Thank you EngineerMom! These are great tips and make more sense to me than anything else I've come across. Keep blogging your great advice!



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TCANNO
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8/8/13 3:49 A

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Find out what is making you do it and work on it.


How can you know that you can't unless you have tried and failed.

Join the 10 minute challenge and get exercising.

See what you are made of by joining the 100 day challenge.

Links on my Spark page.

Don't forget to make your workout fun so as not to get bored with it.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/wigmore/

See trevcannon.blogspot.co.uk/


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MSRETIRED60
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8/7/13 10:06 P

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Working on this now with my nutritionist. Wait 15 minutes before reaching for the food. Try to figure out what triggered desire to eat, did someone say anything or do something that resulted in anxiety, blues or anger. Working on figuring out where my mind is and changing the thoughts.

The life that I have is all that I have . . . . and I intend to live it to the fullest!


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