What is Emotional Eating?
People who are emotional eaters are more likely to feel out of control and stressed. They often lack self confidence and will feel worthless.
Sometimes they will use food as an instant comfort, and at times food will give the same relief or gratification of being rewarded.
Emotional eaters are likely to eat junk food, and therefore may feel guilty after using food as a temporary relief. While eating, emotional eaters may experience numbness or a dulling sensation of their emotions.
Most of these emotions are negative and food is used to alleviate pain or stress. This relief is short lived and emotional eaters will soon resume their negative thoughts and feelings.
Symptoms Checklist for Emotional Eating
If you agree with any of the statements below, this may indicate you are struggling with emotional eating.
- During tough times, I am likely to eat unhealthy foods
- I feel like I am not in control of my eating
- When life is hard I find it difficult to keep myself motivated
- I struggle with low self worth
- I find life too stressful and challenging
- I struggle with self-discipline to control my eating
- When I overeat I often feel guilty
- I obsess and feel overwhelmed by problems in my life
What am I experiencing with Emotional Eating?
We all have days when we’ve just had enough, our emotions are all over the place and we feel out of control. Reaching for our favourite food we can feel arousal, excitement and ultimately comfort.
Chocolate, ice cream, crisps, pizza – whatever your food of choice, you have set up a cognitive, emotional and behavioural habit pattern.
Our associations, beliefs and decisions around food and eating have strong links to our childhood. Your food script is the story you have created about how food will be used in your life, often based on observations and interactions with significant people in our environment growing up.
These influences and decisions from our past are no longer helpful in the present day, so our job is to help you unpick and untangle the unhelpful patterns of emotional eating that you struggle with today.
Triggers for Emotional Eating
Triggers for your emotional eating will come from the way you interpret something that is happening in your life. It may be a situation at work, something a loved one has said to you, or a negative thought you have about yourself. This causes you to have an emotion, which swells and grows inside of you.
Depending on the way you have learnt to feel, express and deal with emotions will determine what you do next. If you bottle up the emotion inside, you may have learnt that eating food has the effect of cutting off the emotion you are feeling.
REMOTE SESSIONS – WORKING ONLINE WITH OUR TEAM
The current COVID-19 (Coronavirus) global situation is affecting us all.
We understand that the uncertainty and disruption to daily life this brings, can be an extra burden for people who are already struggling with their eating, weight and mental health.
All of our therapists are experienced in delivering remote sessions using Zoom, Skype and FaceTime, which means your therapy can continue online without disruption.
Our four central London locations currently remain open, and we are happy to see you in person as well.
Please book a call with our friendly and experienced assessment team who can explain how remote sessions can work for you.
Each year, in acknowledgement of Eating Disorder Awareness Week (2nd-8th March 2020), we have a Spring Promotion to provide greater access to our services.
We want to support people, who struggle with their weight and eating behaviour, change the mechanisms and patterns that are keeping them stuck.
Our experience tells us this can be achieved through psychological support, nutritional support, or a combination of both.
Purchase a 6-session block of therapy, and get 1 session FREE
Purchase any nutrition package, and get 1 session FREE
- This offer is available with all of our therapists, at all price points
- This offer is available to new WM clients only
- Offer ends on 31st March 2020
Self Loathing & Feeling Fat
However, the period of calm you feel after eating is soon replaced with different thoughts and feelings where you tell yourself that you are weak and you feel fat. This can in itself be another trigger for you to eat again.
Everyone has the capacity to indulge in emotional eating. You may feel that it is happening too often, and you may be aware that you are putting on weight and feel that your eating is getting out of control.
“My life has improved immeasurably since working with WeightMatters, I have new found confidence and have worked to really understand my triggers, which has helped me change my reactions to food – Thank you so much”
*Disclaimer – Results may vary from person to person
REATMENT FOR EMOTIONAL EATING AT WEIGHTMATTERS
Many of our clients describe how they reach for food to soothe, comfort, numb or distract them from their emotions. We know that it is essential to teach you skills to start teasing apart this association with food, and help you build new ways of managing your emotions.
We can help you build a new system of regulating your emotions away from food, where you can tune in, recognise, work through and let go of your emotions in a way that is healthy for your mind and body.
Learn more about Emotional Eating
Here are some articles and blogs about emotional eating