We’re coming into the holidays, a.k.a “eating season.” And a lot of it is “emotional eating,” when we use food to comfort ourselves instead of using it to . . . you know, keep us alive. So here are three common triggers to look out for . .
- Boredom or a feeling of emptiness. Like when there’s nothing to do, so you turn to food. Or when you’re sad and use food as a quick pick-me-up. Sadness isn’t the only thing that causes it though. Fear, anger, shame, and even happiness can do it.
- Socializing. A lot of social activities revolve around food. And social anxiety can prompt emotional eating. So try to be mindful of what you’re eating . . . and how much you’re eating . . . when you’re out at dinner, or at a holiday party.
- Childhood habits that carry over into adulthood. Did your parents ever reward you with pizza when you did something good? Or give you ice cream when you were feeling sad? If so, you might still be doing it without realizing.
If you do realize you’re about to eat when you’re not actually hungry, here are a few things you can do to distract yourself and switch gears . . .
Do some chores . . . go for a walk . . . call a friend and chat . . . write an email or a letter . . . or meditate. They’re all good choices, because they’re productive and/or healthy.