People have an unhealthy relationship with food. Some deprive themselves of food in order to lose weight, while others try to cope with overwhelming emotions by overeating. Both are serious problems that lead to even bigger consequences for one’s physical and mental health. However, in this article, we will discuss compulsive or binge eating.
Compulsive or binge eating is described as consuming food mindlessly as a response to stress, anxiety, sadness, or boredom. It is never done out of hunger; in fact, even if one is not hungry, they tend to reach for snacks that are often empty in nutrients but high in calories. When overeating has become a habit, it is sometimes hard to stop.
Seek the Help of a Professional
Sometimes, overeating develops into binge eating disorder (BED), a clinical disorder that affects about seven million Americans. If this is the case, changing your eating habits on your own may be downright impossible. A skilled individual who has had health coach training may change your life.
Your coach will develop a health regime that is unique to you and based on your lifestyle. Diets often do not work because they are often one-size-fits-all, meaning they cater to a wide audience with no regard for a person’s individual needs. Your coach will try to learn all about you, your medical conditions (if you have any), your deficiencies, and your health goals to provide you with a sustainable plan.
Try to De-Stress
Stress is a common reason why people overeat. When you are stressed, your body produces a hormone called cortisol. Cortisol is known to increase your appetite.
If, after a long day at work, you reach for a bag of chips, then stress could be the culprit behind overeating. The solution, therefore, is to reduce stress. There are many techniques that you can adopt that will reduce stress. You can try yoga and meditation, simple breathing techniques, listening to soothing music, taking a walk in nature, and giving time for your hobbies.
Add More Fiber into Your Diet
If you have ever met a health nut, you know that fiber is important if you are trying to lose weight. Fiber is often found in fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts, etc. It helps you lose weight by keeping you full for a longer amount of time, reducing your likelihood to overeat throughout the day.
Instead of munching on chips while working or watching television, try to reach for berries and nuts. During lunch or dinner, say no to a side of fries and go for a bowl of salad.
Slow Down Your Food Intake
A huge problem among binge eaters is eating mindlessly. There is so much going on that many tend to eat their meals while doing other things. This creates a bad habit.
Make the conscious effort to put down your phone and switch off the television when it is time for you to eat. At work, leave your desk and go to the dining area. Eliminating these distractions will help you see what kind of food you are putting into your body, whether it is healthy and if it satiates your needs throughout the day.
Moreover, eat slowly. Savor every bite so that you can gain a better appreciation of your food. It will also help you to become more in tune with your body, allowing yourself to “hear” when you are full or hungry for more.
Food is not inherently bad nor good. It all depends on your consumption. As with all things, moderation is the key to keeping your body and your mind healthy.