CAROL’S CORNER

Welcome back to my little corner in the blogosphere. I was checking my stats and couldn't get over the fact that I have been doing this for a little over four months and have only missed a few days. If anyone had told me a year ago that I would be authoring a blog and having my own facebook group I just wouldn't have believed it. This truly has been the most amazing and rewarding experience of my life.

In my picture today I am wearing one of my thrift store finds. This jewelry set I made, brings out a couple of the colors in the top.

My FitBit combo as always. Also love this ring that was handcrafted by a jewelry artisan I know. I have six rings designed by her. I love it because I do't have to have a whole ring size.

So tonight we are going to continue on with our look into emotional eating and will be continuing to use the information from the same publication. I'm receiving some great feedback on this and am glad I chose something that people seem to want and need. This is going to take at least three days to get through all the information. I think you will find it well worth your time.

STOP EMOTIONAL EATING TIP # 1: IDENTIFY YOUR TRIGGERS

People eat for many different reasons. The first step in putting a stop to emotional eating is to identify your personal triggers. What situations, places, or feelings make you reach for comfort foods?

Keep in mind that while most emotional eating is linked to unpleasant feelings, it can also be triggered by positive emotions, such as rewarding yourself for achieving a goal or celebrating a holiday or happy event.

COMMON CAUSES OF EMOTIONAL EATING

STRESS-Ever notice how stress makes you hungry? It's not just in your mind. When stress is chronic it leads to high levels of the stress hormone Cortisol. Cortisol triggers cravings for salty, sweet, and high-fat foods – foods that give you a burst of energy and pleasure. The more uncontrolled stress in your life, the more likely you are to turn to food for emotional relief.

STUFFING EMOTIONS-Eating can be a way to temporarily silence or ” stuff down” uncomfortable emotions including fear, anger, lonliness, sadness, anxiety, resentment and shame. While you're numbing yourself with food, you can avoid the emotions you'd rather not feel.

BOREDOM OR FEELINGS OF EMPTINESS -Do you ever eat to simply give yourself something to do, to relieve boredom, or as a way to fill a void in your life? You feel unfulfilled and empty, and food is a way to occupy your mouth and your time. In the moment, it fills you up and distracts you from underlying feelings of purposelessness and dissatisfaction with your life.

CHILDHOOD HABITS-Think back to your childhood memories of food. Did your parents reward you for good behavior with ice cream, take you out for pizza when you get a good report card, or serve you sweets when you were feeling sad? These emotionally based childhood eating habits can carry over into adulthood. Or perhaps some of your eating is driven by nostalgia-for cherished memories of grilling hamburgers in the backyard with your dad, baking and eating cookies with your mom, or gathering around the table with your extended family for a holiday dinner.

SOCIAL INFLUENCES-Gathering together with other people to eat a meal is a great way to relieve stress, but it can also lead to overeating. It's easy to overindulge simply because the food us there or because everyone else is eating. You may also overeat in social situations because of nervousness. Or perhaps your family or circle of friends encourage you to overeat, and it's just easier to go along with the group.

KEEP AN EMOTIONAL EATING DIARY

You probably recognized yourself in a least a few of the previous descriptions. But even so, you will want to get more specific. One of the best ways to identify the patterns behind your emotional eating is to keep track with a food and mood diary.

Every time you overeat or feel compelled to reach for your version of comfort food, take a moment to figure out what triggered the urge. If you backtrack you'll usually find the event that kicked off the emotional eating cycle. Write it all down in you food and mood diary ;what you ate (or wanted to eat), what happened to upset you, how you felt before you ate, what you felt as you were eating, and how you felt afterward.

Over time you will see a pattern emerge. Maybe you always end up gorging yourself after spending time with a critical friend. Or perhaps you stress eat when you're on a deadline or when you attend a family function. Once you identify your emotional eating triggers, the next step is to find healthier ways to feed your feelings.

STOP EMOTIONAL EATING TIP # 2: FIND OTHER WAYS TO FEED YOUR FEELINGS

If you don't know how to manage your emotions in a way that doesn't involve food, you won't be able to control your eating habits for very long. Diets so often fail because they offer logical nutrition advice, as if the only thing that keeps you from overeating is knowledge. But that kind of advice only works if you have conscious control over your eating habits. It doesn't work when emotions highjack the process, demanding an immediate payoff with food.

In order to stop emotional eating, you have to find other ways to fulfill yourself emotionally. It is not enough to understand the cycle of emotional eating,or even to understand your triggers, although that's a huge first step. You need alternatives to food that you can turn to for emotional fulfillment.

ALTERNATIVES TO EMOTIONAL EATING

1) IF YOUR DEPRESSED OR LONELY, call someone who makes you feel better, play with your dog or cat or look at a favorite photo or cherished memento.( not sure if I agree with the last recommendation. I would think it could also be a trigger.). I would reccomend exercise, as it is known to help depression and anxiety. I would also recommend joining some kind of group that might have similar interests as you and would give you some kind of social outlet.

2) IF YOU'RE ANXIOUS, expand your nervous energy by dancing to your favorite song,squeezing a stress ball , or taking a brisk walk.( exercise is always a good option , because it has so many positive results).

3) IF YOU'RE EXHAUSTED, treat yourself to cup of hot tea( one of the relaxing herbal blends),take a nice soaking bath, light some scented candles and wrap yourself in a soft cozy blanket. And of course, get some rest.

4) IF YOU'RE BORED, read a good book ( I always tell my grandchildren, if you'are a reader you will never get bored),watch a comedy show (or any kind that interests you), explore the outdoors, or turn to an activity you enjoy, whatever that might be.

We're gonna end here tonight and pick up tomorrow, hopefully with both tips # 3 and 4. I never know when I start these things how many nights it will take to cover any given topic and just play it by ear. Don't forget to tune in to the next installment of this very immortant topic.

Hope you're off to a good start in the new week. I started back on a weight loss diet till I get back off the 6 pounds that managed to find their way back this last few weeks.I need to try and get it off by the 18th of April. I want to be back at my fighting weight for a family wedding. I have a killer dress. I know it still fits, but want it to look totally fabulous.

So decide what your goals are for this week and put a plan in motion to achieve them. I have already put my plan in motion, I just need to stick to it. Have faith in yourself, look forward never back, and just go, go, go. Till next time, God Bless.

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