If you usually eat when stressed, this article will show you how to stop stress eating for good.
It is not normal to eat when stressed. In fact, stress eating can lead to weight gain and other complications if left unaddressed.
Research has associated stress eating with obesity and a host of other diseases that trail being overweight.
There will always be times when life deals you the wrong hands but realize that food won’t fix your problems.
The temporary pleasure is not worth the long-term risk. You should start looking for ways to end the behavior as soon as possible.
Below are ten easy steps to curbing your stress eating behavior.
How to Stop Stress Eating For Good
1. Understand Your Emotions
Stress can come from a wide range of emotions. Once you understand those emotions, it will be easier for you to stop stress eating.
Stress-eaters usually use food to block negative feelings. Don’t try to deny your feelings if you feel anxious, sad, or heartbroken. Instead, allow yourself to feel, understand, and control your emotions.
When you do that, it is easier to take steps towards fixing your problems rather than resorting to food to lighten up your mood.
2. Drink a Glass of Water
Sometimes stress triggers intense cravings for certain foods. Instead of giving in to those cravings, drink one or two glasses of water.
Your cravings may disappear after drinking water. You should also form the habit of drinking water whenever you feel hungry after eating. Most times, we confuse thirst for hunger.
If you are bored with plain water, drink ginger-infused water or these clean eating drinks.
3. Differentiate between Physical and Emotional Hunger
It is hard to differentiate between physical and emotional hunger since they feel like the same thing.
When your stomach is empty, you may feel aching sensations and pain in the stomach. All these resemble the signs of stress. But you can still learn to differentiate between the two.
If you are feeling hungry under stressful conditions, try to remember the last time you ate.
If you ate your last meal two hours ago and you are now hungry, ask yourself whether something is troubling your mind. If this is the case, then maybe its emotional hunger and you should try to get your mind off food for now.
It is also important to learn to control hunger without eating if you want to stop stress eating.
4. Take a Short Walk
It may help to go for a short walk if you have overwhelming cravings a few minutes after eating.
Walking is one of the most effective stress relievers.
Walking will help declutter your mind of stressful thoughts and take your mind off food.
After taking in some fresh air, you may even be motivated to do a full body workout.
5. Create Distractions
Doing a fun and engaging activity can easily take your mind off food.
Write down a list of things to do whenever you feel the urge to stress-eat. You could draw, knit, text a friend, play a game, watch comedy clips on youtube, check your email, or do the chores.
These activities can help turn your attention away from stress-induced food cravings and keep you in a calm and relaxed mood.
6. Practice Relaxation Techniques
Stress creates a buildup of the hormone cortisol.
Cortisol is known to increase cravings for sugary foods, which are harmful to your body. If left unchecked, high cortisol levels can also increase the risk of belly fat and several chronic diseases.
Practicing relaxation techniques such as meditation, mindfulness, and yoga can help reduce stress, lower cortisol levels, and curb your food cravings.
7. Exercise regularly
Exercising is a powerful way to relieve stress and anxiety. When we exercise the body releases feel-good hormones that lift our mood and make us feel happier.
Rather than eat when stressed, do a short workout. You can do either the jump rope or jumping jacks challenge.
8. Share Your Troubles
In difficult times, it can seem as if you are bearing the weight of the world all alone. One way to handle your conflicting emotions is to share them with someone.
It could be a friend, a family member, your pet, a therapist, or even yourself.
We all need social support in our lives. Therefore, don’t keep it to yourself if you are struggling with stress eating.
9. Eat When You Are Hungry
This might seem obvious, but eating can be the last thing on your mind when your boss has ruined your day or your partner is stressing you.
However, you have to eat when you are hungry because your body needs the fuel to keep you energetic.
If you don’t eat when you are physically hungry due to stress, it becomes harder to differentiate between physical and emotional hunger.
10. Write Down Your Feelings
Get a journal and document your feelings to have a better understanding of what stresses you out.
The physical act of writing down your feelings can help you stop stress eating. It makes you think clearly and more objectively about your situation.
Instead of eating, write your feelings in a journal. This habit can help you find a solution to the negative emotions making you eat.
Stress eating can be hard to relinquish. However, by learning to be aware of your feelings and dedicating yourself to change for the better, you can stop stress eating for good.
If you are trying to lose belly fat, stress is not the only thing that is hindering your progress. Your hormones, gut, and diet may be expanding your waistline. Luckily, the VFX BODY can fix these belly-expanding problems and help you get a firm and flat belly in the shortest time humanly possible.