Food was so simple when we were kids — we ate when we were hungry and stopped when we were full but as we get older, we often use food in a different way: We stress eat and our food consumption is often based on our emotions. We eat when we’re happy, sad, lonely, anxious and even just plain bored. Who hasn’t polished off leftovers just because they were, well, there?
We all eat a little too much from time to time, but eating in response to feelings rather than hunger can harm your health, both physically and psychologically. Many of us will eat more when emotions are the driving force, yet food provides only temporary relief. Once your spoon hits the bottom of that pint of cookies ‘n’ cream, the feelings remain — along with a hefty serving of guilt for eating too much.
Here’s how you can kick the emotional eating habit, and recognise and respect your body’s real hunger cues: