I tend to be an emotional eater. There, I’ve said it. While others may drown their sorrows in liquor, my tendency is to seek solace in a batch of brownies (preferably with nuts!) after an emotional upset.
I am by no means alone.
Many people turn to food when they feel stressed out, sad, hurt or overwhelmed. Which is why over eating often occurs during and after a break up. Break ups can take a devastating toll on us emotionally, so “comfort” a.k.a. “junk” food becomes all the more appealing because it tastes sooo good, plus it’s readily available.
And anything that makes us feel good, like that pint of delicious Ben & Jerry’s in the fridge, is just the ticket. However, the major problem with using food to cope is, while the “feel good” is fleeting, the detrimental effects on our waistlines and over-all health is far more enduring.
The key to avoiding the perils of over eating after a break up is to realize you can choose healthier coping strategies instead. Okay, with so much temptation around, I admit that is easier said than done. So, the following are a few ideas to help you stay healthy while healing:
When you are feeling low, instead of heading for the kitchen, visit or call up a trusted friend and lean on their support. They love you and want to help you.
Get moving. Whether you walk, swim, run, jog, hike, bike, skate, etc., experts agree that exercise not only is good for your body, but it also serves as a mood regulator.
Keep a journal. Writing about your feelings can be a great outlet. In fact, I’ve written more extensively about journaling and the benefits you can receive from it.
Laugh. I really do believe we underestimate the healing laughter can bring. For instance, if you are feeling overwhelmed, put on your favorite comedy and allow yourself to let go. It’s amazing how much better you feel after a deep, hearty laugh.
Focus on a hobby, or discover a new one. Getting involved in a hobby is an excellent way of turning your attention away from your troubles in order to accomplish a task you find pleasurable.
Again, these are just a few excellent tips to help you avoid the pitfalls of over eating. I also encourage you to check out T.W. Jackson’s The Magic of Making Up program. Despite the title, his program includes excellent suggestions on healthy ways to cope with the end of a relationship.
Please trust that you can get through this difficult time without having to sacrifice your mental, physical or emotional well-being.