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Seek support

Resist isolation in moments of sadness or anxiety. Even a quick phone call to a friend or family member can do wonders for your mood. There are also formal support groups that can help.

Overeaters Anonymous is an organization that addresses overeating from emotional eating, compulsive overeating, and other eating disorders.

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MORE IDEAS FROM THE SAME ARTICLE

Negative emotions may lead to a feeling of emptiness or an emotional void. 

Food is believed to be a way to fill that void and create a false feeling of “f...

Some people find relief in getting regular exercise. A walk or jog around the block or a quickie yoga routine may help in particularly emotional moments.

Resist grabbing a whole bag of chips or other food to snack on. Measuring out portions and choosing small plates to help with portion control are mindful eating habits to work on developing.

Once you’ve finished one helping, give yourself time before going back for a second.

Make sure you get enough nutrients to fuel your body. If you eat well throughout the day, it may be easier to spot when you’re eating out of boredom or sadness or stress.

Try reaching for healthy snacks, like fresh fruit or vegetables, plain popcorn, and other low-fat, l...

You may find yourself eating in front of the television, computer, or some other distraction. Try switching off the tube or putting down your phone the next time you find yourself in this pattern.

By focusing on your food, the bites you take, and your level of hunger, you may discove...

Discovering another way to deal with negative emotions is often the first step toward overcoming emotional eating. This could mean writing in a journal, reading a book, or finding a few mi...

Keeping a log of what you eat and when you eat it may help you identify triggers that lead to emotional eating. 

Try to include everything you eat — however big or small — and record the emotions you’re feeling at that moment.

Feelings of shame and guilt are associated with emotional eating. It’s important to work on the self-talk you experience after an episode.

Instead of coming down hard, try learning from your setback. Use it as an opportunity to plan for the future.

There are a variety of studies that support mindfulness meditation as a treatment for binge eating disorder and emotional eating.

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Physical hunger

  • It develops slowly over time.
  • You desire a variety of food groups.
  • You feel the sensation of fullness and take it as a cue to stop eating.
  • You have no negative feelings about eating.

Emotional hunger

  • It comes ...

Consider trashing or donating foods in your cupboards that you often reach for in moments of strife. 

Think high-fat, sweet or calorie-laden things, like chips, chocolate, and ice cream. Also, postpone trips to the grocery store when ...

While filling up could work in the moment, eating because of negative emotions often leaves people feeling more upset than before.

This cycle typically doesn’t end until a person addresses emotional needs head-on.

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Pay attention to your emotions as you start to think about eating (you might feel hungry, or have a craving to eat something). Notice your emotions as you eat, and after as well. 

Keep a few notes — what emotions do you feel, when, and why. What do you feel like eating? 

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Being in Control

To be in control does not mean restraining. A person who is in control should have the capacity and freedom to self-govern.

Rather than fighting with your body, provide it with an autonomous control by allowing all kinds of foods back in your life, yet eating consciously, paying atte...

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Awareness Is Key

Emotional eating is sometimes called "mindless eating" because we often don't think about what we're doing and let our unconscious habits or drives take over.

Become aware of why you're eating when you eat. Maintain a food journal. If you ha...

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