10 Effective Hacks To Control Stress Eating
People under stress are divided into two types: the first ones stop eating, the second ones run to the refrigerator every hour. They try to reward themselves with food and to feel better. Both behaviors can turn into serious eating disorder. So, where does the stress eating habit come from, and how to take control of eating? In this article, we will guide you on how to stop stress eating and enjoy good health.
How Does Stress Eating Develop?
Stress is the main problem of modern man, the cause and companion of many diseases. And the uncertainty of the future, from which the world has not yet recovered after the Covid-19 pandemic, has added several weighty points to the stress statistics.
The trouble is that you can quit bad habits and continue to live a full life. But from food, which can become a drug during a period of stress, how to get rid of it? Confronting habits that lead to stress eating is not easy, but it is possible! So let’s find out how you can avoid stress eating.
Effective Ways To Control Stress Eating
Here are some tips that will work well for anyone trying to quit stress eating.
1. Keep Food Diary
In the diary, you need to record a bunch of food eaten along with your emotional state. Convulsive calorie counting is not needed. It is important that after about a month, you will see triggers triggering overeating in the background of stress. And then learn to prevent bursts of appetite in moments of anxiety.
2. Control The Time of Overeating
Overeating times are peak hours when you lose control over your food. Usually, it’s the evening after work, parent-teacher meetings and a bunch of redone household chores.You can help yourself by planning menus ahead of time.
Keep healthy snacks and hide appetite-provoking foods. In extreme cases, go to bed early. Sleep restores the strength spent on dealing with stress. By the way, sleep problems also lead to problems with being overweight.
3. Avoid Binge Drinking
There is no doubt that everyone is struggling with some problem in his or her life. Some people are worried because of their relationship problems, while others have competitive jobs. For example, the first responders (firefighters and public safety professionals) have extremely exhausting jobs.
As a result, they try to deal with the stressors by relying on alcohol and excess food. However, binge drinking or eating is not the solution to your problems but will only make things worse. Thus, we advise such people to get proper treatment to cure these problems. There are also special first responders treatment plans that can make quitting these self-harming habits even easier.
4. Avoid Place of Overeating
Every person has places and companies that encourage overeating. Can you unwind at the movies without popcorn and soda? And in a famous restaurant, refrain from a dessert? For a while, you should refuse to visit such places.
If you are really struggling with stress eating, you will not leave any chance to satisfy your desires. Thus, avoid meeting such people and going to such places that promote overeating.
5. Manage Portion Sizes
It seems to us that there is more food on the plate if the plate itself is small. Use this miracle of optics – get small dishes! Please note that the average portion of food in one meal is 200-300 ml – so be mindful of it.
This method does not take into account bulk lettuce leaves and greens. Therefore, if a small plate for the main meal upsets you, complement it with a large salad bowl with greens.
6. Avoid Staying Hungry
In a state of stress, all our voluntary efforts aim to combat the source of stress and repay its consequences. Therefore, you cannot load yourself with starvation! Instead, doctors recommend eating fractionally, in small portions, in a state of stress. So you get the energy your body needs and help your body calm down through monotonous chewing.
7. Allow Yourself Some Cheat Meals
Once a week, athletes on a strict diet allow themselves cheat meals so as not to break down. You can do the same! After all, compulsive overeating is very similar to an eclipse. It happens that you sit peacefully at the TV, then after 10 minutes, your hands reach out for a bag of a chip of unconsciousness. Don’t let it happen, and stay focused. And if you succeed in it, treat yourself with a cheat meal.
Many are afraid that sport will shake up an already strong appetite. Yes, but you will safely merge stress hormones in the gym due to the production of endorphins. It is an excellent way to balance the hormones in the body! Look for other activities that will distract you from the desire to eat and fill the brain with useful emotions. Go to the museum, for example.
9. Help Of A Psychologist
In the event that stress eating has become chronic and you no longer control raids on the refrigerator, the help of a psychotherapist may be needed. Maybe you need to talk to someone about problems and emotional difficulties? Or do you have a problem with self-esteem, and eating disorders only cover up this huge hole inside? In either case, it is better to consult the help of a professional.
Awareness of the problem with stress eating is half the battle. All you have to do is learn to ask yourself, “Do I really want nuggets, or am I stress eating?” Or, “Am I really hungry, or am I really thirsty?” You will learn to listen to your body, its emotional and physical signals, and this is the path to recovery. You need to stay alert and listen to the needs of your body.
In times when you are really stressed, try to practice endogenous breathing. This is when the exhalation is 1.5-2 times longer than the inhalation. Five minutes is often enough to stop a panic attack and an increase in appetite in difficult moments. You can also follow the hacks mentioned above in this article to curb stress eating.