Emotional eating

11.16.2021 0

Eating well, starting with the brain? This is the general conclusion underlying the concept of "emotional eating", which defines how our emotional state affects our nutrition and, consequently, our health. Emotions influence our habits and have consequences. Everyone perceives their state of mind in relation to food differently. The same fact that affects our mind does not have the same behavior in two different people: some tend to eat more to reduce the state of anxiety, others may eat less. It's about how we manage our emotions on a daily basis and how this affects our eating habits. By attacking the root of the problem, we can find the answer to our eating disorders, be it bulimia, obesity, poor appetite, binge eating, etc.
The influence of emotions on our habits
Recently, the Journal of Eating Disorders published an interesting paper proposing to explore how state of mind and its management affect our eating habits. Participants supported the use of physical activity, monitoring their eating behaviour and engaging in alternative stress reduction and coping strategies to mitigate the unwanted effects of their emotional eating. Study participants also expressed concern about the effects of mood on their weight, body image and health.
"These results suggest that programs that promote exercise, mindful eating, emotion regulation and body care can have a positive impact on those trying to maintain a healthy weight," the study authors added in their conclusions.

Strategies to combat hunger and satiety
Efforts to regulate food intake often involve awareness of hunger and satiety cues, as well as attempts to use alternative strategies to cope with negative emotions. This is thus a possible alternative to attempts to benefit from learning strategies to regulate food intake, such as mindful feeding techniques.

"These techniques can help them better manage internal hunger and satiety cues to determine when and how much to eat. Programs that incorporate emotion regulation strategies, such as those that teach emotional consumers to use healthier coping mechanisms, such as social support and self-care, when they experience negative emotions, would also be helpful," the study says.

The results of all the work related to emotional eating warn about the importance of offering integrative plans, an approach from a global perspective that includes different therapeutic areas.

Thus, it is recommended to promote physical exercise as it is beneficial both in terms of weight management and stress reduction. Various studies have found a protective effect of physical activity on weight gain in people with emotional eating problems.