The Mindful Diet Day 50-53
Week 8: Deal with Your Emotional Crud
It’s time to look at the thought patterns and beliefs about yourself that may have caused you to reach for the wrong foods or overeat in the past—and might threaten to derail you now. Now that you’ve got the basics well in place, you’re ready to face the tough stuff that might come up. Here’s how to look under the hood of your emotional life in a productive way:
Days 50–53: Embrace the fact that you will eat for emotional reasons.
In one of the first studies Kristeller worked on, she surveyed healthy eaters (mostly nondisordered, healthy-weight individuals) about their eating habits and found that most of them said they eat for comfort on occasion. “Food is comfort, so it’s completely unrealistic to think that you won’t turn to food to soothe yourself every so often,” says Kristeller. Grab a journal and, every morning for the next four days, write down one memory of a time when you overate or reached for the wrong foods when you were sad, stressed, happy, or feeling some other emotion. Then, accept these times. This behavior will happen again, and it’s OK.
Now that you've had a cheat day, it's time to take mindful eating to the next level.
We learned several mindful eating tactics over the past few weeks, but sometimes our emotions can triumph over our new habits. There's no denying that we all look to foods for comfort on occasion, and there's no shame in that. Whether happy or sad, stressed or relaxed, food can comfort us. For these next few days, reflect on times you've looked to food for comfort, how you felt, and accept yourself for being a normal human being. We will all turn to food for comfort again and again, and that's ok!