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Built 03-17-2010 06:49 PM

Healthy Alternatives to Emotional Eating...
Hi ladies! Yesterday we were "talking" about finding alternatives to emotional eating. I know we have a lot of experience in this community so I thought it'd be helpful to pool some ideas that each of us has tried that have worked for us. Hopefully, we'll have a tool box full of goodies:) Here's something that works for me WHEN I REMEMBER to do it:

1. Using the journal tool to write about anything and everything I want. Sometimes I'm just not ready or even aware of what to share on the forum. This helps me gain some clarity and it works when I just sit myself down to do it.

Anyone else have something that has worked for them?

bellekiss 03-17-2010 07:26 PM

I find it is hard to be upset (or eat) if I'm dancing or otherwise active. I use line dancing videos on youtube or dance exercises videos on netflix to get moving. Also, swimming gives me a chance to reflect without many distractions (walking could likely work too but I don't care for it as much).

I also feel being very busy (work, son, husband, 2nd job, church, extended family, friends) helps me...if you don't slow down long enough, you can't binge!

I'd love to hear other suggestions.

Built 03-17-2010 09:40 PM

Thx Belle! Yup...boredom can be one of my triggers. Thx for the suggestion to keep busy with meaningful activities. Funny how "cravings" lose their power when we're busy.

cjohnson728 03-18-2010 12:08 AM

Besides journaling (awesome, btw):
Preferably something that I can't do and eat concurrently!

For example, sometimes I'll get in the tub and just center myself and think on why I'm out of sorts. Alternatively, progressive relaxation, where I sit in a chair and tense up one muscle group at a time, then let it relax all the way out (I start at the feet and work my way up to my forehead).

Sometimes I'll pick up one of the books I have around here on nutrition, diet, or exercise, just to refocus myself on what I want and what it will take to get there, and to remind myself to take care of me. I'll go through and find that one quote that really seems to apply at the time and keep it in the back of my head the rest of the day.

Looking over old journal entries is good, me a lot of perspective (as in, Wow, was I really that crazy last July? lol).

I gotta say it...exercise. I will literally tell myself out loud to get my butt up and on the treadmill. The endorphins start, I feel strong when I exercise, and I have a great playlist of really motivating songs, and the lyrics really help me get in touch with what's been percolating.

I think I post a lot also to keep from eating...just trying to flesh things out, and it would be weird to stuff my face while posting on FitDay :)!

Built 03-18-2010 12:37 AM

Great tips. Had to chuckle about the eating while on Fitday...I can honestly say I haven't done that, so that has got to be in the top 5!!!

quinnesec 03-18-2010 01:13 AM

Anyone have any ideas for non-food "rewards"? I'm the type of person that always rewarded myself with food when I worked especially hard, or had a bad day, or didn't feel well.

What can I substitute? As I said before, not really the mani/pedi, massage type of girl.
What do you "treat" yourself with?

cjohnson728 03-18-2010 02:11 AM

I'm not a mani/pedi person, either, but due to shoulder, back, neck, elbow and wrist issues from tennis, I have become a big fan of massage. Of course, that's not necessarily a reward; it doesn't always feel good! Otherwise:

Books (what about healthy cookbooks?)
Music (downloads for my iPod)
Plants (to put in the yard)
Clothes (mostly exercise-wear; hopefully brave enough for a bikini soon)

Maybe something along the lines of what you like to do for exercise; like I would get a new tennis bag or hat or skirt, whereas you could look at some backpacking/hiking gear.

I'm not really into shoes, jewelry, or purses, but I love sandals in the summer, so that could go on my list occasionally.


RunbikeSki 03-18-2010 02:32 AM

I love to travel and see new things, even if it is just a 2 hour drive to the "big city", the mountains or the desert. So I'll treat myself to a trip - usually just a day trip - where I my only responsible is to see or experience something new, like a museum I've never been to, or a hike I've never done. If I can coerse the husband or a friend to join me all the better, but it isn't essential. For really big accomplishments it's a weekend away - again, nothing extravegant - just to chance to take a break from my usual schedule.

quinnesec 03-18-2010 03:54 AM

Those are some great ideas! I've always rewarded myself with ice cream from my favorite shop or some other yummy treat. Have to make some adjustments for a lifetime
of bad habits.
Even, when I was little, my mom would always take me for something fattening after getting done with a dental appt. or whatever was unpleasant. Still find it comforting today. Hmm... time to change bad habits! :)

Wylie7 03-18-2010 03:20 PM

I am opposite from most of you. If I am too busy, I don't eat, but then I get so hungry I binge on anything that I don't have to prepare. This especially happens when I've had a stressful day. I don't get bored anymore, so I can't say I eat when I'm bored...

I bring healthy, easy snacks to work and don't keep chips, pop and sweets on hand at home. I do have one day a week that I binge, to make sure that I don't fall off the wagon permanently. It gives me something to look forward to during the week and gives my brain a rest since I find it draining to think about what I'm eating constantly. Thankfully I cannot eat as much as I used to, so the binge days are not as detrimental to my weight loss anymore!

I always find shopping therapeutic. Even if it is for my kids, spouse, or someone else. I go to the dollar store if I don't have anything that I need to buy. I am also finding going for a run therapeutic, but it is really difficult to do with 2 small children in the house.

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