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9/15/14 9:39 P

I'm PITIFUL.I'm feeling like $$it right now. I just want to go somewhere and hide. I'm getting older and I'm single. I have been single for over three years and I'm not pretty, I'm old, I'm SO MAD RIGHT NOW!!!!! WHY IS THIS HAPPENING TO ME? WAIT, I KNOW WHY.... FOR ONCE I WOULD LIKE TO BE SEXY TO A MAN. I WANT A MAN TO WANT ME BUT A MAN THAT I WANT BACK.RRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR

Edited by: JOANN_IS_HERE at: 9/15/2014 (21:41)
LADYCROFT7 Posts: 92
9/15/14 1:27 P

I am also an emotional eater with an added complication: I eat when studying. Now as a full time college student I study a lot! Goldfish, cheese-its, chips, I tend to go for carbs but I have occasionally grabbed carrots. It's almost like sitting down to study flips a switch in my brain "time to eat." Studying on campus helps somewhat but the mindless hand-to-mouth motion while reading remains a big issue for me

ENGLISHBLUEBELL SparkPoints: (1,870)
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Posts: 88
9/14/14 4:42 P

Taking a walk outside or on the home treadmill, instead of emotional eating is an excellent idea - and one with a positive outcome to uplift one's spirit. emoticon emoticon emoticon

Edited by: ENGLISHBLUEBELL at: 9/14/2014 (17:11)
MERLANDSON123 Posts: 1
9/14/14 1:16 P

I guess I should get out of my marriage or at least get counseling! I binge when I can't communicate with my husband. Either he won't respond or I expect him to read my mind and get the message! When I eat it is for comfort and weirdly enough, I feel like I'm getting back at him. The only person punished is me!

SEAGLASS1215 Posts: 594
9/14/14 4:21 A

Nice to read all these replies and know i"m not alone

GETTIN_FIT7 SparkPoints: (21)
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9/13/14 7:59 P

Wow it is actually so great to read this.
I have always been good sticking to workouts, but eating is my downfall. Tiredness, boredom, stress, anxiety.. And I'm an eating machine! Binges can go for days. Thank you all for being honest and posting, makes me feel not alone and know that can overcome it! :)

ANNARAM SparkPoints: (594)
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Posts: 7
9/13/14 11:37 A

I am right now in the middle of a 3 day binge.... I start logging my calories and then my eating gets into such a blurr that I can't recollect it all. Reading this board is right now bringing me to my senses. I really need help and appreciate everyone's honesty. I am going to continue this day on a different note. Thank you.

MARILEEJ SparkPoints: (107)
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9/13/14 10:40 A

I too eat when tired. Why can't I just get up off the couch and go to bed? emoticon

CHALEYATWINS SparkPoints: (3,034)
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Posts: 83
9/13/14 10:33 A

Last night we had Family Movie Night (at home). We do this weekly, saves money, time, and regularly we DO have fun! I mention this as an example: My youngest son brings out a book, of all things, to read-in the dark AND it was the type his Dad doesn't approve least in his presence. My husband begins talking about it (during the movie) he's calm, our son pushes the issue by raising his voice, I tell them PLEASE this isn't the time or place. Our son get's up and heads toward his room while my husband continues to talk to ME about the "situation" for the remainder of the movie.

I felt completely "down" because we don't have a lot of quiet time (my husband is a law student) and Friday is the ONLY day that he has to spend quality time. I had eaten probably about 1.5 hrs before and do you know what? Yep, I started to feel "hungry" after this situation! I had a good dinner and it was low-cal plus filling. I knew that it was a reaction to everything so I told myself that if I eat anything it will be some more of the Cucumber Salad-and that's it!

It was like a "switch" had been turned off...I wasn't hungry anymore! I guess I have to put those emotions in their place-almost like a child. haha

MLANIGAN213 Posts: 1
9/12/14 8:57 P

Take one day at a time and try to do the best you can that day. You mess up? That's okay, do better tomorrow. Take moments and appreciate the small things in life. Nothing makes me feel better than hugging my children or seeing how much they want to be near me. I get the emotional eating thing and relating over eating to painful stuff that happened in the past. However, if I over eat, I try to figure out why, and then learn from it and move on. Being honest with yourself and being accountable are essential, at least for me. Also, I try to remember that feeling I get from being too full, I don't like it and if I want to eat unhealthy food, it helps to remember why I shouldn't.

REDGIRL54 Posts: 255
9/12/14 2:33 P

I am an emotional eater, as well. I tend to eat when I'm bored. It helps pass the time. If I am busy, I don't think about hunger. emoticon

SEMEIONC SparkPoints: (1,184)
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9/11/14 5:00 P

I just eat... eat... eat above and beyond what my body needs. Now it is the right time to change the attitude that drives me to do this to myself. I am 201.8 lbs today. In a few months time I will be 140lbs. At that point I will move into changing my body so it becomes more resilient as I age.

BENE38464 SparkPoints: (11,303)
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Posts: 2,547
9/11/14 10:32 A

I have always thought that I was an emotional eater. Finally I figured out that I just wasn't getting enough protein. I don't eat red meat...maybe once or twice a year. After I upped the protein (Greek yogurt with a scoop of protein powder or a protein shake) I lost my cravings. I think that was my trouble...I never felt satisfied!

CARRIE1948 Posts: 10,493
9/11/14 10:18 A

I;'m more a tired eater. When I'm tired (happens when I don't get enough sleep), I eat constantly. I know when I'm doing it that it's not going to wake me up, yet I can't seems to stop.

CRAMPERELLA Posts: 1,545
9/9/14 9:51 P

Binge Eating Disorder is a serious mental disorder and should be diagnosed by a medical professional. Overeating or using food as comfort is perfectly normal, but if you are consuming large numbers of calories on a semi-regular basis and feel like you have no control over what and how much you eat, you may need to see someone about it. Many athletes suffer with it and it is quite prevalent. Most people with eating disorders do not seek help and often chalk it up to emotional eating, but they need professional help to recover. If any of you feel like food is controlling your life, get help.

TEENIEME3 Posts: 692
9/8/14 10:56 P

When I was younger and in stressful situations, I never wanted to eat. But now that I am older and in different situations, I get cravings to eat?! That just seems wrong. I need to figure out a way to revert back to my younger years, apparently ( lol )

BORCRUTH SparkPoints: (7,635)
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9/8/14 7:44 P

I got divorced about 3 years ago - and gained 20 pounds. Kind of felt sorry for myself - so I can relate.

SEAGLASS1215 Posts: 594
9/8/14 5:14 A

This is a constant struggle for me as well...and I haven't yet figured out why. Trying to journal about it helps and it seems lately my biggest stress is from work. But that didn't always apply. I kind of turned to emotional eating when I gave up smoking, so Im trying to go back to why I started smoking and what was so stressful so long ago that I can't seem to get over...

LANAL57 Posts: 7
9/7/14 5:30 P

I am also an emotional eater. I can eat when I am sad, happy, and when I am not even hungry. I am going to try to keep healthier options in my house and eat less. It is so hard to lose weight now that I am older. emoticon

Edited by: LANAL57 at: 9/7/2014 (17:30)
BRANDESKA SparkPoints: (43,246)
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Posts: 61
9/6/14 3:57 P

Stress eating to me is tied to cravings. I knew I had to get cravings under control, because I mostly cannot control the stressful situations that pop up in life.

How did I get the cravings under control? I know I've said it before in other posts, but it was absolutely essential to stop eating sugar and so many processed foods/grains. It really felt like some sort of drug addiction to me; and I certainly did not want to be a "drug addict".

The amount of stressful life situations hasn't decreased, but now it doesn't even occur to me to eat the stress away, whereas before all I would want to do is sooth myself with pizza and cookies. I've decided that eating those foods are not even an option to me, and since I've been without them I don't even want them and I'm not tempted to overeat.

MIGHTYN1 Posts: 74
9/5/14 5:57 P

hi, I'm a little shy here so here goes I've been seperated from my husband a year now - he left mths. after my mother passed. I honestly don't know how I've done it and come out alive, I have to agree that it's about distractions, I've been knitting blankets for the cat network and before project linus and have taken some classes. But have been known to eat me some oreos or whatever may be chocolate. This has been the worst year ever.

MARILEEJ SparkPoints: (107)
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9/4/14 5:33 P

Please keep me updated on that course with Jan . Do you get emails from Sounds True? I wanted to take it but alittle pricey right now. I am very interested if you find it worthwhile. And, have you read her book?

FITTEREVERYDAY SparkPoints: (29,416)
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Posts: 2,087
9/4/14 10:36 A

I look at myself and my life and I doubt I'd be overweight if I weren't an emotional started with stress but now I do it to procrastinate too. I am starting to get on top of it and it's all about distraction. If I want to eat and I'm not hungry I try to have a list of other things to do such as: read a book, take a walk, play with my cats, take a bath, play a game...nothing unpleasant. I know it can be hard but I honestly think it can be beaten.

BHENDRICK2 Posts: 1,212
9/2/14 6:29 P


BRENDAJ290 SparkPoints: (3,266)
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Posts: 100
9/2/14 6:10 P

Always an emotional eater. Eat when I am happy to celebrate, Eat when I am sad to feel comforted...Eat when I am bored for something to do...Eat when I am busy but that must be fast food! I have been like this since puberty....I must learn to eat to live not LIVE TO EAT.

9/1/14 12:45 P

Yes, I too am a emotional eater but I'm learning to control this very much.

I feel I can truly do this now with no support from my family because I finally believe in myself and I am doing this for me and no one else.

GRANDMAISDOINIT SparkPoints: (1,054)
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Posts: 10
8/31/14 9:08 P

emoticon I am also an emotional eater....I eat when I am happy, sad, with friends and stressed. I have a lot of stress but I think I create a lot of it myself. I am so thankful to you all. I am not all that plugged in yet but this my 20th day on SP. I was up two pounds and it was the chocolate ice cream...the pint and the tamales. Oh is to tomorrow and success. Have goodnight and a much better Monday. emoticon

JERICHO1991 SparkPoints: (337,504)
Fitness Minutes: (177,565)
Posts: 9,260
8/31/14 9:31 A

Too much mindless eating recently. Ready to get back on track.

TRIATHLETEGIRL SparkPoints: (56,067)
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Posts: 356
8/30/14 1:12 P

I had a cup of chocolate ice cream this morning for breakfast. 500 calories! I can certainly work it in to my daily calorie allowance, but the problem is that a breakfast like that will put me at a higher risk for a binge later on in the day when I'm going through the sugar withdrawls. Ugh! My plan is to keep myself busy and white-knuckle it.

ACACIA21 SparkPoints: (83,852)
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Posts: 2,207
8/30/14 7:29 A

7 years on Spark and I still havent licked emoticon this

WITTYBRIT2 Posts: 81
8/29/14 9:08 A

I add to emotional eating by eating mindlessly. I have just signed up for an on line course in mindful eating, with Jan Chozen Bays. I am trying to work on 'getting unhooked' from anger and other emotions which cause a spiral of feelings, often culminating in binging on junk.

I have found that if the foods I know I should not eat are not in my home, then I will go for something healthy, carrots, humus, celery etc.


Edited by: WITTYBRIT2 at: 8/29/2014 (09:09)
8/27/14 11:36 A

I want to share a couple of related resources that are helping me get a handle on my emotional eating. I do not have any vested interest in sharing them. They are the book 100 Days of Weight Loss by Linda Spangle and the associated team here on Spark -
. HTH.

NEWNAMENEWLIFE SparkPoints: (2,297)
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Posts: 18
8/27/14 12:34 A

If I start a sentence with "I want ...(fill in some food item here)" or "I need to have (food item)" I try to catch myself. I try to question the truth of that statement. Is that REALLY what I want? Is that REALLY what I need? Sometimes I run through a "universal needs list". Sure enough, the answer is often something other than food...companionship, movement, encouragement, reassurance, fresh aire. So, before you believe that next thought in your head...double check to see if it true.

There are no new thoughts. Thoughts are person to another.

LULU4562 Posts: 3
8/26/14 7:00 P

That is so helpful the way you framed it. I'm going to print it and put it on my fridge. Thank you!

8/26/14 9:34 A

Thank you. Some very interesting ideas about the benefits of feeling hungry. I will think about what you wrote as I go through my day.
Now gotta get outside for my morning walk!

TAYGRL SparkPoints: (151,174)
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Posts: 3,561
8/25/14 10:24 P

Still kinda working on this one.


THEVOW2013 SparkPoints: (75,838)
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Posts: 1,310
8/25/14 7:13 P

thank you ...these reminders are perfect!

8/25/14 10:29 A

Another stress eater here!! For me, its the FATS that attract me, cheese and butter. I can snack on them alone. Know how stressed I am by how fast I go through those two. and this past month has been a doozy. I'm not too bad if I can keep out of the kitchen, but has the cook, how do you do that? I'll consume a meal+ worth of calories just making the dinner. Sometimes it doesn't even TASTE good, its just what I want. my mouth waters at the thought of it (like right now!) Throw in some salty chips to go along with that fat and I'm in heaven! and again, its not even tasting good as its going into my mouth. yet I can't seem to stop myself from cutting one more slice of cheese, or another pat of butter.

Top it all off with, fell off the exercise wagon. What had been pleasure suddenly was just a boring, time wasting, struggle! After several weeks without, thought it would feel good today, but it doesn't. and the last two weekends have had some real work going on and my body has felt the aches and pains of it all. So must get back to it.

This morning am making the effort to get back on track, good luck to me and to everyone else out there who is making that same declaration!

KPEDEN74 SparkPoints: (69,950)
Fitness Minutes: (119,386)
Posts: 35
8/22/14 3:32 P

This is an intesting topic to me as I am the opposite of a stress eater. . stress shows up and I can't eat. But I do get the idea of finding a way to deal with stress. For me I either workout or clean. If my house is spotless, watch out! One suggestion would be to go for a walk instead of giving into a binge.

COLLEENBOB SparkPoints: (25,120)
Fitness Minutes: (9,859)
Posts: 71
8/21/14 2:38 P

Stress eating is my biggest challenge. I can talk sense to myself all I want, but I will still, defiantly and deliberately, make poor choices when I feel overwhelmed. The only step forward I have been able to make so far when stress eating is to refuse to lie to myself about it. That's where SP has really helped me. I journal every bite. Then when I see the calorie count start to skyrocket I am so appalled that it will help reign me in, for that day at least.

8/21/14 2:27 P

Emotional eating is a temporary fix for a long term problem. It takes the pain away for a few hours. After just a little while, we notice the pain is back. The next time you want to reach for food to solve the problem, remember it really can't fix anything. You will still need to fix what's bugging you or you will continue to feel like this.
For many years, I ate to avoid feeling hungry. Hugh portions and lots of snacks. Slowly, my nutrition changed. I ate more healthy foods but I still ate big portions. Slowly, the portions grew smaller. I remember feeling surprised at first by feeling hungry. It took a while to be okay with that feeling. Learning to be okay being hungry opened up a lot more insight into the cause behind my desire to eat. Being hungry was okay for a little while. It also let me learn the difference between true hunger and just wanting to eat or just wanting a particular food. If I'm not hungry but I just want to eat, the cause is usually emotional eating. I need to stop and figure out what's bugging me and fix that. If I find myself craving something, again I need to stop and think do you want the taste of this particular food or is it something else. If the craving is for a particular food, can I make a healthy alternative and be happy? Sometimes I have to figure out if I just want something salty or sweet or creamy or... If none of those work I need to again look at emotional eating triggers and fix what's bugging me.
Now, I feel hungry every day. I find being over full is uncomfortable. I've learned to eat healthy foods and be totally comfortable. I've learned to eat less nutritious foods and enjoy them and make it work. Mostly I've learned to use hunger as a guide and lack of hunger as a clue to question why I want to eat. So that's is what I learned about feeling hungry. The old enemy is a friend.

ADRIENALINE Posts: 19,926
8/20/14 6:02 P

Every time I'm gone off of the wagon I can trace to a death in my family that hit me hard. I get into this funk where I feel like I can't deny myself chocolate, desserts fill in the blank because I'm in the middle of pitying myself something fierce. My dad died this past March and Im still having trouble getting back to the healthy eating I need. It is so hard!

RUBYREDSTAR19 Posts: 7,293
8/20/14 11:07 A

Huge stress eater here...but it's funny because when I get stressed, I get sick, but I still eat

8/20/14 10:25 A

Dealing with that kind of pain is difficult. It's a lifelong journey, I think. Writing is very helpful for me, too. Thank you for an insightful post!

8/20/14 8:52 A

Emotional or stress eating is definitely a problem for me. It is just so easy to say, "the heck with it," and eat a pint of Ben & Jerry's. One of the things I've used to combat this problem is journaling. I have a journal by my favorite chair and in my purse. This has helped immensely. I write in it at least daily, but on rough days, I may write in it several times. Also, when I want a cheeseburger (when I'm not hungry) I will go somewhere and take a short walk. 10 minutes of fresh air and movement will release quite a bit of stress. Calling a friend or taking a hot bath work for me as well. I'm also a stickler for random rules, so I have made it a household rule that we do NOT eat anywhere in the house except at the table. This has cut down on habitual eating. I hope these tips are helpful. Good luck!

IAMPREACHER Posts: 5,132
8/19/14 8:12 P

Emotional eating is what put me up to 250 pounds! I never was able to feel full and I would eat and eat and eat and never feel like I had eaten a thing. I started wondering about this issue and started on a journey that would not only bring me to the truth of what was going on, but would also actually help me overcome it.

A lot of people like me tend to hide behind food, using it as a kind of pacifier. Something hurts deep inside and tries to rear its ugly head but we keep it down with food. Stuff it down. but the more you stuff, the more you gain.

Looking at pain square in the eye is a very difficult thing to do because we are brought to say, "I'm fine"when in fact, I'm really falling apart inside but can't tell you that." It's just not publically correct! This pain can be caused by something very simple in childhood. A child doesn't know how to process strong emotions and if the environment is abusive or uninvolved, that child will learn to hide their feelings. Thumb sucking past two years old, bed wetting, screaming in a restaurant, etc. are all indications of some sort of pain or dissatisfaction. We all have a demand for attention, for love and affection; some more than others. It's the ones that have the strongest demand that usually end up trying to cover their pain. Food is a good one. It comforts. But it's temporary. And so a vicious cycle is created.

The solution seems simple, but it's one of life's most challenging issues. Deal with the pain and the emotions that went unresolved and you're pretty much on your way to freedom. The original pain can be a trigger when you're stressed at work or at home by many circumstances that mimic the original pain. For example: a little girl's father is the most important person in her life. If that father is distant, uninvolved or rejecting, that's a pain that is hard to deal with for a child. Then when the girl grows and gets married and the honeymoon is over, her husband may become distant, uninvolved or rejecting in some area of the relationship. So the unresolved pain way back then becomes threatened. So we eat, eat , eat to keep it stuffed down.

Dealing with emotionally eating isn't an easy thing. It's a process. It took time to get to the place when the food became a cover up. And it takes time to heal. Making peace with yourself is the key to healing.

One thing that really helps me now when things threaten me and I feel like I want to raid the refrigerator is this: I stop and ask myself two things. 1. Do I really want this or do I really need it. 2. Am I thirsty instead. Then getting a drink of water or tea (whatever is sugar free) usually diverts the thoughts of panic "I've got to have something to eat."

Edited by: IAMPREACHER at: 8/19/2014 (20:16)
GRAMCRACKER46 Posts: 1,804
8/19/14 2:14 P

Welcome. It sounds like you have a good plan going. I "fall back" to poor habits when I am tired or haven't planned. It's a process, isn't it.

emoticon emoticon

8/19/14 2:11 P

This did help, thank you! The article on taming the emotional beast was extremely helpful--especially reading the comments of other people who have struggled with getting external satisfaction from their habits.

I will continue to work with my counsellor because I know a lot of it has to do with my PMDD symptoms and my general mental wellbeing. However, it doesn't hurt to know some other stuff in the meantime.

SPARK_COACH_JEN Posts: 65,997
8/19/14 12:43 P

Welcome back!

I'd encourage you to check out Coach Dean's series called "Mind Over Body". It deals with emotional eating and ways to cope with those feelings besides turning to food. Here's a link:

Hope that helps,

Coach Jen

8/19/14 10:56 A

Hey Everyone!

It's been a very long time since I've been back on Sparkpeople but I've gotten the "spark" back into my belly and for the past six months I have been working with a personal trainer who has also created a meal plan for me (she is a licensed dietician). I've lost about 13 pounds working with her.

Working out is so easy for me to do, even when all I want to do is sleep in on most days. I can work out until I'm nothing more than a pile of broken muscle and tears (I love that feeling). However, I, for the life of me, cannot maintain proper eating habits (I don't call it a diet because I accept that proper eating habits are a lifetime commitment).

I've been reflecting and have noticed that when I'm in incredibly stressful situations, I tend to go back to my unhealthy eating habits.

However, it's much deeper than I don't have the convenient food for myself. I know how to make myself convenient food. Hell, I've prepared meals a week in advance knowing how stressful my weeks will be. And yet, when I'm stressed, instead of going to the amazing chicken stir fry that I made a day ago, I'll find the nearest burger king and get a giant whooper meal. And I'll binge on this kind of food for close to two months before I reel myself in and go back to healthy eating habits. I easily gain 10-15 pounds when this happens.

After deciding to go to a counsellor for other mood related problems (mostly PMDD related stuff that has a lot to do with my unhealthy eating habits) and getting that under control with supplements, I have made the realization that I connected pleasure with food.

When my thoughts were negative and I didn't know how to create positive ones to combat the negative thoughts, food was always there to give me the quick fix of happiness that I needed to get through everything.

I feel like the only way I can conquer my weight issues and my unhealthy relationship with food, is to conquer this unhealthy connection where food = happiness/stress reliever for me.

Now, I accept that I will occasionally eat food that isn't healthy for me. I'm okay with that. I love going home and eating what my mom cooks every once in a while. However, I really need to learn how to not fall off track for months after one night of southern comfort food.

Does anyone struggle with this and have any advice on how I can overcome this? Any advice would be much appreciated.

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