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Emotional Eating: Coming to Terms with the Vulnerable Truth

Emotional Eating

Eating food at  regular intervals is a healthy routine, but one that is based on emotions or a current mood can prove detrimental in the long run.  Food does more than fill our stomach — it also satisfies feelings. 25%-30% of Americans have emotional eating issues, with the percentage towards a hype in thick of present circumstances.

According to Brian Wansink, PhD, director of the Food and Brand Lab at the University of Illinois “Ice cream is first on the comfort food list. After ice cream, comfort foods break down by sex: For women it’s chocolate and cookies; for men it’s pizza, steak, and casserole.”

What you reach out for when eating to satisfy an emotion depends on the emotion. According to an article by Wansink, published in the July 2000 American Demographics, “The types of comfort foods a person is drawn toward varies depending on their mood. People in happy moods tended to prefer … foods such as pizza or steak (32%). Sad people reached for ice cream and cookies 39% of the time, and 36% of bored people opened up a bag of potato chips.”

Emotional eating can cascade into binge eating—a complete loss of control over eating. Chronic emotional eating can add on pounds

The next question that  follows, How to identify emotional  Eating?

Emotional eating can be a real problem with those struggling to lose weight. They want to lose weight, but are depressed so they eat. They get more depressed and eat more.  
Putting the right foods in your pie hole (i.e., not pie), noshing when your nerves are jangling can actually calm you down. And that’s great news, because the last thing you need is more stress, which over time can increase your risk of high blood pressureheart disease, and obesity.

Combat Emotional Eating:

Experts till date don’t know exactly why we gravitate toward fatty or sugary foods when we’re feeling down, or how those foods affect our emotions. Taste and the pleasant memories  associated with junk foods surely play a role, but that may be only part of the story.
The biological mechanism at work is still unclear, but the findings suggest that the stomach may influence the brain by releasing hormones, says Lukas Van Oudenhove, M.D., one of the study authors and a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Leuven, in Belgium.

Practice the principles of balance, variety, and moderation.

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