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Towards a Better Understanding of Emotional Eating

It’s not like being overweight isn’t frustrating enough by itself. But, to add to the stress, many people don’t understand why they are overweight. It may not be in their family history, they may eat a healthy diet and they may be active regularly. But still, they carry the extra weight.

From the barrage of unrealistic media images to human genetics, there are many factors that may not be immediately apparent, but that can make it more difficult to manage your weight.

If there is one of those factors that is as devastating to your weight as any, it is emotional eating. And it’s also one of the most difficult for you to identify because it’s not just about when you’re feeling “emotional”. It can also result from stress, lack of sleep, watching a sad movie – or a happy one.

Other Factors That Affect Emotional Eating

Below are some of the factors that may be behind your emotional eating. Learning more about them can help you start to break the emotional eating cycle.

  1. Your Brain Works Against You – Your brain doesn’t like to be deprived of what it is accustomed to getting. Cutting out certain foods, or changing certain habits, can make your brain work against you because it thinks something’s wrong and wants to get back to normal. That puts pressure on your willpower, which is then more likely to give out if you’re tired, stressed, or at a party.

  2. You Have an Innate Need for Independence – We all like to think we have power over the choices we make. With your willpower under attack, the idea that “I can make my own choices” can seem like a really good one – and off goes the top of the ice cream tub.

  3. You May be a Perfectionist – Perfectionism requires an almost constant diligence in everything you do. You always want to present your best self to others. Feeling shame is particularly difficult. You have anxiety about making mistakes – even if you make none. You deny your negative emotions to keep them in control. The stress of all that monitoring, control and self-criticism sets up a situation where, eventually, something’s got to give. And you open another bag of chips.

To learn more about emotional eating and how to better manage your weight, visit your local Herbal One Centre and speak with a nutritional consultant who’s ready to help you.


If you enjoyed this post, check out our recent article “The Biggest Reason Why Weight-Loss Diets Don’t Work”.


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