Friday, August 26, 2011

Emotional Eating

Emotional eating is something I've done for my entire life. I think many people who suffer from obesity have had their turn with emotional eating.

When I was bored? I'd find something tasty to eat - like a pair of Swiss cake rolls (or 2).

Stressed? Mad? Sad? I always turned to food.

Happy? That was an occasion for food too.

There. was. always. food.

I don't remember much from my Biggest Loser application, but I remember one specific question that said "Food is..." and let you fill in the blank. I wrote "Food is everything. When I am sad, I turn to food. Mad - there's food for that too. Even happiness is celebrated by food."

I've done pretty good over the last 15 months to control my emotional urges towards food. My only rule for overcoming this was eat when I am hungry, do something else if I'm not.

Tonight, after a stressful week at work, I wanted nothing but a trough of fried Chinese food and to sink into my couch and not talk to a soul for the whole weekend.

Check on the first part of that. (I'm working on the whole not talking to anyone thing.)

I've had a great week food wise. Despite eating that 450 calorie cookie Tuesday, my food choices overall have been good. Exercise has been great and the scale is moving.

I knew I was choosing General Tso's chicken for the wrong reasons. Sure, I wanted it because it tastes good, but what's more - the thought of eating it was comforting. Chinese food was a staple in my "past life" and the thought of a Friday night in front of the TV with Crab Rangoon sounded like the best solution as I was driving home almost in tears from the frustration of dealing with stupidity.

(Side note: If I ever win the lottery, the first thing I'm getting is a chauffeur. Seriously.)

But I digress, I don't know where I'm going with this...confession? Maybe. But I feel better talking about it. I know making this one bad choice tonight isn't going to make me gain 6 lbs overnight and somehow eating what was probably about 1,500+ calories is not really making me feel guilty.

I feel more guilty knowing I was making the wrong decision, realizing that I was turning to emotional eating and continuing to make the wrong choice.


Anonymous said...

This isn't going to come out right, and I'm sorry. But maybe the occasional comfort food isn't all that bad? I mean, you recognize that it's comforting, that it doesn't quite fit in with your food plan, and that's good. You're not mindlessly eating. You're making a conscious decision.

It's something I've been thinking about a lot lately - -the whole feeling guilty over eating certain foods, or for going off track. I don't have any answers yet.

Big Life, Little Blog said...

You know that's an interesting point you make. Why can't we just indulge once in while? I think this can also be applied to the food-as-reward issue. Sometimes, if I have a good weigh in, I just want a damn cupcake. But I don't typically indulge in this way because I don't want it to be construed as a food-as-reward.

marisol said...

I am totally guilty of doing this and I do continue to do it but not as bad as before. What I mean is that if I have a great weigh in, I will reward myself with some froyo. It's healthy and not too many points. I think it depends if you are trying to "damage" yourself with food. Whether it be intentional or not.

Jennifer said...

I'm definitely an emotional eater, and I indulge when I'm stressed or angry or when I'm celebrating too. There are times, a few, when I do something different, something healthy, rather than turn to food. It's amazing how good I feel when I do that. I need to remember that and remember how guilty I feel after I've overindulged. Have a treat now and then is fine. But using food as a crutch, or as a reward, isn't. There are other things to lean on and other ways to reward ourselves!

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