What is Emotional Eating and How to know weather you are an Emotional Eater or not .
Dieting and failing over and over can be very upsetting and frustrating, one of the most important things is to know the cause of failure before trying again and repeating the same pattern. In many times the real cause of failure is Emotional Eating.
Emotional Eating is eating, not out of hunger or tradition, but eating to suppress feelings that we are unable to deal with or handle. Everyday we face a lot of negative emotions, stress, anger , depression, boredom ……and more. Usually we don’t know how to deal with theses emotions, how to accept and respect them, so instead of dealing with our feelings we turn to eating as a substitute or a temporary drug.
There are 5 differences between Emotional and Physical hunger, and knowing them is the first step in the healing process.
1- Physical hunger comes gradually : you feel hungry, then if you don’t eat you get very hungry then you don’t eat so you feel like starving.
While in Emotional Hunger you suddenly feel starving .
2- Physical Hunger accepts options: you want to eat something but If it’s not available you accept alternatives.
While in Emotional Hunger when you crave something you don’t accept any other options.
3- Physical Hunger can wait : when you feel hungry you can wait depending on the circumstances.
While here if you are hungry you must eat immediately and cannot accept any delay.
4- Physical Hunger : you stop when full, even if you sometimes over eat, still you stop eating when you feel full.
While Emotional Hunger: you don’t stop eating even when you are full. You can eat and eat and eat no matter how full you feel .
5- Guilt Feelings: in Physical Hunger after you finish your meal you feel satisfied and content.
While here you usually end up with feelings of guilt and shame which leads to more eating and more stress.
We all pass through phases of Emotional Eating every now and then especially when we are stressed or depressed, and this is normal, the problem is if this a continuous pattern and a life style.
Now after what we learned we can stop and look when we are over eating and hungry to know and identify our hunger, then after identifying it we should learn to find alternatives for dealing with our feelings and emotions.