I’ll give you a little insight into how I blog.
Before I decided to even think about blogging, I sat down and drafted out 3-months of possible blog topics. I did this knowing full well that those ideas would change and evolve as I defined my blog and developed my “voice”. But I decided to map out 3-months of posts to prepare myself for act of writing, everyday, about a certain topic. Sometimes I change the topics around because I don’t feel like writing about them and sometimes I trash the topic because the idea for a post was plain-old-dumb.
Blame it on my super-psychic awesomeness but I actually planned to write about emotional eating this week. It just so happens that coincidentally I am PMSing AND a huge, viral video broke of Jennifer Livingston, a WKBT News 8 anchor, defending her weight after receiving a harsh letter from a viewer criticizing her physical appearance (http://www.eonline.com/news/350822/viral-video-news-anchor-blasts-viewer-s-criticism-of-her-weight). So, needless to say, weight and food are on my mind and the minds of the nearly 5 million viewers who took to YouTube to watch the clip of Jennifer defending herself .
I love food – which you all know. But did you also know that I am an emotional eater?
I eat when I am happy.
I eat when I am sad.
I love comfort food.
I eat when I am stressed.
At times, I also binge eat.
I wish I was the kind of person who lost their appetite when feeling low or when feeling stressed, hits the gym (like my hubby). When I am sad, I can’t seem to eat enough. I eat to fill whatever void is looming in me at the moment; trying to cover it up by feeling full in my stomach.
I have read many articles, and even a few books, about emotional eating, like Bethenny Frankel’s Naturally Thin. I even watched HBO’s Weight of the Nation where they showed people thinking about their food, for nearly 30 minutes, before taking the first bite as a way to build more food awareness and mindful eating. I totally get what they are saying. I fully understand why my body triggers certain foods when I am feeling vulnerable. I even know I am emotionally eating WHEN I am emotionally eating.
I also know that I am not alone. Many other Moms out there are emotionally eating as well. Some associate it with exhaustion, shifts in hormones before and after childbirth, or that overwhelmed feeling that many mothers feel trying to balance life while also raising happy, healthy kids. I know because I am friends with some of these Moms and we talk about food and our own weight challenges often. And while my, and my friends’, weight challenges may not be as difficult as others out there, particularly those struggling with obesity, they are still a challenge and are important to us.
Emotional eating is definitely not a healthy habit. Over time, if I don’t get it under control, it could spiral into something far more serious. It’s one of the struggles I deal with regularly. I am also aware enough of my own issues not to pass them onto my children. I am very conscious about using food as a reward or a punishment and I never console them with food when they are crying or mad. I would hate for them to grow into emotional eaters like me.
I did pretty good at controlling my emotional eating today – despite PMSing and feeling pretty sad. I most certainly don’t have the answer on how to stop or control emotional eating. I am still figuring out what’s the right answer for me. In the meantime, I am trying to ignore the little voice in my head that is telling me to go to the vending machine and get a pack of Peanut M&M’s.
What is it about those damn Peanut M&M’s?