Overeating and comfort eating has significantly increased since the very start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Studies have shown that people - especially younger teens and adolescents - have been turning to food as a direct result of the pandemic. This is due to a variety of reasons that include boredom, stress, panic, and emotional eating. The last two years have presented overwhelming stress for many but as we slowly (fingers crossed) start to come out of the pandemic, we have put together this latest blog post to outline 5 top tips so that comfort eating doesn’t have to become the new normal for you.
If you are struggling with disordered eating, we of course, urge you to seek medical and professional help. I also provide a FREE no-obligation consultation call where we can discover the next steps to get you the help you require.
It’s no secret that comfort eating can help to provide a temporary sense of well-being and make you feel good in the short term. However, it is certainly not a healthy or recommended long-term strategy for dealing with uncomfortable emotions. The reason that comfort eating can become addictive and ingrained in a person is that it directly stimulates the brain’s reward system as a direct result of consuming foods in sugar, fat, and salt.
Here are our top five actionable tips to reduce and/or help with comfort eating…
Seek Medical & Professional Help
First and foremost, if your comfort eating has developed into an eating disorder and you require urgent help, we urge you to get in touch with your local doctor to seek medical and professional help. It is also advisable to speak to a close family or friend so that you’re not struggling on your own. Confiding in someone you can trust and be yourself with is always highly recommended. If you don’t have someone you can confide in, I am here for you and ready to arrange a call whenever suits you.
Start Being Mindful
Mindful eating is a really healthy habit to start practicing when it comes to comfort eating. Avoiding distractions when eating and solely focusing on consuming your food is a great place to start. Often, with comfort eating, we can consume sugary and fatty food mindlessly and sometimes unconsciously too. By focusing attentively on what you’re eating without distraction can also help you to enjoy the food without the need to crave more.
Manage Feelings Proactively
This third point is interlinked and a follow-on from the eating mindfully tip. Managing your feelings proactively and feeling them when they come up, instead of pushing them down with food, is another fantastic actionable tip that you can start practicing today. When uncomfortable feelings and emotions arise, instead of automatically reaching for food for comfort, ask your question about what you are feeling and try to sit with it before going for food. This way, at least if you do go for food in the end, you will be doing it consciously and not subconsciously, therefore much more aware of your actions.
Seek Comfort Elsewhere
This may be easier said than done but it’s good to start with one other thing that you can seek comfort in other than food. Start by getting a piece of paper and mapping out all things and hobbies that bring you joy and comfort and then go with the one that’s most convenient or brings you the most comfort. Once you have the one thing decided on, the next practice will be then to turn to this when uncomfortable emotions arise.
Communication with different people can help. For example, joining a support group with people that are going through a similar thing in life can help you feel better and you may also get an accountability partner in the process as well. Connecting with local eating coaches (just like myself) and therapists to understand your habits is also recommended.
Contact Us Today
If you would like to arrange a FREE 30-minute consultation discovery call to discuss comfort eating and gain loads of fantastic value and insights into conscious eating choices and how I can help, please feel free to give me a call on 07413 012 474 or book a discovery call. https://www.naturallyempoweredhealth.com/discovery-call