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Do You Eat to Cope?

Posted Oct 20 2012 10:10pm

I had the most amazing conversations with some of my clients yesterday. It was so inspiring and humbling to be let into their struggles and triumphs. I cannot believe I get paid to walk with such incredible people!

One conversation struck me deep into my core. It was a conversation about using food as a coping mechanism. In other words, using food to avoid or celebrate different stressors. Some of the stressors we came up with were:

-Comparing

- Fatigue/Exhaustion

-Defeat

-Excited

These were just some of the stressors that will trigger a binge or emotional eating for this person. But can’t we all relate?! I do this too. Not as often as I used to, but every now and then, when the stress gets to be too much (or I’ve had too much red wine) I totally overeat.

For me, it’s not about eating the “wrong” thing so much as over indulging. I love to binge on raisins, dates, carrots, popcorn…these are my vices. Just because it’s not ice cream and cookies doesn’t mean it’s ok. I still give my control and power over to food. I let them become my medication, my savior. This is not ok.

One of the things we talked about was how to find new ways of coping with stress instead of turning to food. There are several questions you can ask yourself to help identify potentially positive coping skills.

- What coping skills have I used in the past?

-What skills have I seen others employ that I would like to use?

-What emotions am I trying to avoid?

-Can I name the emotions that I am feeling?

Asking these questions can help give you some insight into those moments when you just want to stuff your face. Naming the emotion you are feeling can help take the power away from it and instead, give you the strength to talk yourself through it and come out on the other side.

Does any of this make any sense? I just worked a 11.5 hour day, so this might just make sense to me, lol. 

Check back on Monday for great finds at Safeway!!

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