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Note: This is a post by Andrew editor of How To Stop Eating
Growing up I was always overweight, or fat, yes the big “f” word ;) Then during my college years, I decided it’s time to lose the weight. So I set out on mission “get skinny or die trying”, off on my way I was. I was able to drop half of my extra pounds. But no matter what I did I just couldn’t drop those last 15 pounds. I would drop 5 of those pounds and gain them right back. This went on for 3 years.

Of course this was very frustrating, maybe you are even in the same boat and know exactly what I’m talking about. After doing lots of research, I found out I’m an emotional eater. I often ate to cope with tough and negative emotions such as stress, fear, sadness, anger, or boredom.

Emotional eating is where the term comfort food comes from. You know when you are having a stressful day and at night eat your favorite comfort food. Maybe it’s ice-cream, pizza, cookies, potator chips, or some other junk food. Either way often when we are stressed out we crave those comfort foods and end up engating in emotional eating.

Are you wondering if your an emotional eater? To find out you need to think of instances where you overate, or ate more than you normally would. Did a certain emotion cause that? Maybe something stressful happened prior to your overeating episode? Read about emotional eating triggers for some more insight.

So how do you stop emotional eating? Well the first step is increasing your awareness of why you eat. As you are reaching out for food ask yourself if you are physically hungry. If you are then go ahead and eat. If you are not physically hungry, then try to figure out why you are reaching for the food. Maybe you are just used to eating at this time everyday. Maybe you are bored and you are about to eat for entertainment. Maybe you just had a stressful day and are trying to comfort yourself. Just be aware of why you are reaching for food. Don’t judge the reason, go easy on yourself.

The more awareness you have around food, the more you’ll be able to spot emotional eating. Once you spot your emotional eating you will find that there are certain emotions, events, or circumstances in your life that’s causing it. You need to come up with action steps to take care of those events and circumstances, preferably eliminate them if possible.

Let’s say you are finding out that you are always stressed at the end of your work day. Then maybe you need to talk to your manager about making some changes at work. And if that doesn’t work, maybe you should consider slowly transitioning to a new job.

Getting over your emotional eating takes time, and is a gradual process. However it will help you build healthier eating habits and finally drop and keep off those extra pounds.

Note: This was a post by Andrew editor of How To Stop Eating