Thursday, March 6, 2014

How to Stop Stress Eating

Are you one of those people that stress and then eat everything in sight?  "In my experience, emotional eating is the top reason diets fail," says Linda Spangle, R.N., the author of 100 Days of Weight Loss. "You get into a pattern where every time you feel anything—sadness, loneliness, anxiety, boredom, even happiness—you turn to food."  

I definitely turn to food when I a stressed, but I have a few tips that will allow you to avoid eating everything in sight.  

Know What Stresses You Out

Does a certain person get on your last nerve?  Does your job push you over the edge?  Know these stress triggers so that you will be ready to fight them off. 

Are you really hungry?

Knowing the difference between physical hunger and emotional hunger can help you stop the stress eating.  Check out the physical hunger and emotional hunger chart above.  Do you get specific cravings when you are hungry?  I typically crave sugar or fatty foods when I am stressed thus a specific craving.  These cravings aren't physical they are emotional and thus I know to not eat when I get those cravings.

Have Healthy Snacks on Hand

If you can't avoid stress eating, reach for a healthy snack instead of something bad.  Keep baby carrots on hand, apples, and fruit.  These items are a quick easy and are great when you are feeling stressed.  If work is the stress factor keep healthy snacks in your drawer.  Offices are terrible for unhealthy foods be it a candy dish or cookies in the break room.  You want to avoid those problems especially if you are stressed!  If you have healthy snacks at work you can reach for carrots instead of those cookies.

Have a support system

If you are having a rough day and are feeling stressed sometimes you need to reach out to someone and talk about it.  If you have a support system in place, you can reach out to those people when you are having a rough time.  Make your support system people that are like minded and support you.  If you are trying to lose weight, pick a support system with people that are either trying to lose weight or are living a healthy lifestyle.  My monthly fitness challenges try to keep everyone motivated to stay healthy but are also in place as a support system.  

Hopefully these tips will keep you from stress eating.  If you need someone to reach out to when feeling stressed, feel free to email me at any time fitnessbyalicia2013(at)

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