When eating goes unchecked, there are a number of pitfalls which must be vigilantly avoided. Among these is that of “emotional eating.”
One reason this may fly under the radar is the fact that most people do not consider this to be a particularly hazardous vice, particularly in comparison to things like alcoholism or drug addiction. But food can be an addiction.
It is far too easy to rationalize the behavior and commit to working out at a higher intensity to compensate for it. However, it is important to examine whether this phenomenon is in fact riskier than many believe.
Indulging in Less-Than-Healthy Choices
It is common for those who fall prey to emotional eating to do so out of the blue in order to satisfy a distinct craving. The foods desired at such moments tend to be unhealthy items laden with fat, sugar and salt, given that such foods offer an immediate, happy sensation many desire.
The ability of food to provide comfort during times of stress is well-known, as is the nostalgia factor of many pre-packaged convenience foods such as candy or cookies.
Sadly, the beginning of weight problems in young children can often be traced to the soothing capabilities of high-calorie, high-fat selections.
Why do we emotionally overeat?
Loads of people, maybe even like yourself, use emotional food choices as a means to mask uncomfortable feelings they would rather not address. While everyone's motivation is a bit different, typical triggers include sadness, isolation, boredom, stress and the like.
Covering up normal human feelings in this way can often provoke serious feelings of guilt and regret in the aftermath of a poor dietary choice. When the emotional eater attempts to disguise their habit from those they love, the situation can grow even more dire, eventually spiraling out of control.
An intractable cycle of binging and remorse can ensue, creating a lifelong dilemma that is hard to defeat.
The Negative Effects of Being Overweight
There can be no denying that emotional food addiction can lead to extremely serious health issues. Obesity in and of itself is problematic and is innately linked to concerns such as hypertension, diabetes, elevated cholesterol levels, depression and more.
When such difficulties manifest themselves, it is necessary to honestly assess whether emotional eating may be to blame. If you become significantly overweight, medical interventions in times of emergency may be impeded, which can have serious consequences.
Weakened immune responses, organ function and the like can leave any overweight person very vulnerable to sudden death or debilitating disease.
By adopting a proactive approach not just to diet, but also to the emotional response to difficult situations, it is possible to lead a much healthier life both now and into the future.
You CAN Overcome This
I've painted a pretty damning picture in this short article, but all hope is not lost. There are ways to overcome emotional eating from self-help to getting help from a therapist. You will know which route is right for you.
As a next step read my guide to recognizing emotional eating triggers
Hi, I'm Aileen, the owner of Diet Pill Judge. I have personally tried loads of diet pills over the years and found that only a few of them really work.
My background is in science, so I set out to find supplements that have scientific evidence behind them and which I can confidently recommend.