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Carbohydrates are a powerful antidepressant which makes it difficult to lose weight and stay on a diet.
Stress automatically causes most human beings to crave high energy food or comfort food. (We don't crave carrots, lettuce and celery with nothing on them after a difficult day.)
Comfort food is a way many of us manage emotions because it does make us feel better for a short period of time.
Tips for managing emotions:
- Awareness. Be aware of when you eat when you are not hungry. Are you eating out of habit, while driving, on the computer, watching TV? Do I eat when I am bored, anxious, frustrated, down and/or depressed or angry?
- Try not to eat while you are busy doing something else. When you do eat, eat mindfully and enjoy. Stop when you are full.
- If you are angry or frustrated calm down by taking a walk, or doing something pleasurable that is not about consumption of food or beverage.
- If you are feeling down, activity and exercise can help lift your mood.
- Work on having positive thoughts and know that bad moods don't last.
- Manage your stress and take care of yourself. What are you really needing
- If you are stuck in an emotion (depressed or irritable daily) seek professional help. Many people are self medicating a clinical depression with food.
Are you interested in working with a nutritionist to help guide you in making a healthy diet plan and better handle the tendency to eat to manage stress. Consider an individual nutrition session with our registered dietician.
Courtesy of Andrea Bon-Wilson, MA Psychosocial Counselor