Updated: Sep 11
People say lifestyle changes are one of the most effective ways to lose weight and keep it off in the long term. Anyone who’s spent any time on the diet hamster wheel knows this. We’ve heard it dozens of times.
Eat a healthy diet
Get regular exercise
Get enough sleep
Have a support system
This makes sense, and it’s helpful information, but what happens when life goes sideways and good intentions get lost? It can be a nightmare for anyone who eats emotionally.
Speaking from personal experience… any time life threw a curve ball my lifestyle changes went out the window and got replaced with food. That’s what happened in December 2013 when I was diagnosed with breast cancer.
At the time I was a Beachbody Coach. I was eating a healthy diet and exercising daily. I was celebrating a 100-pound weight loss goal!! My stress levels and sleep patterns seemed to be under control. I had a HUGE support system in the Beachbody community, full of friends and role models working towards the same goals.
One would think I was aligned for success because I had made significant and positive lifestyle changes. What happened instead was not what I expected.
The news of breast cancer turned my world upside down. Needless to say, it was stressful. I felt worried, anxious, and terrified. I ate and drank myself through that December and gained 30 pounds in the first month of my breast cancer diagnosis.
While helpful, all the positive lifestyle changes I made didn’t have an impact when it came to my deep-seated behaviors with food and emotional eating.
That brings me to the point of this message.
Emotional eating is the elephant in the room.
Until the underlying issues are addressed, emotional eating is likely to continue, even with positive lifestyle changes.
It was a harsh wake-up call in January 2014 when I knew the next diet program or meal plan wasn’t the answer. Instead, I needed to figure out how to stop stress eating. After completing cancer treatment I embarked on a journey to heal the toxic relationship with food that started when I was a kid.
Acknowledging my emotional eating habits and the tendency to turn to food for comfort continues to be the best lifestyle change I ever made. And now, I have the privilege and honor of helping others do the same.
While it hasn’t been a quick fix to overcome emotional eating, it’s not as hard as people think. It helps to work with a professional who’s been there and understands the struggle.
The key is learning how to steer yourself back when you veer off the road. That’s a skill set you’ll have for the rest of your life. Then your spirals become less frequent, less intense, and much shorter until they stop altogether. That’s how we break the cycle of emotional eating.
If you're struggling with emotional eating, please know that you're not alone. There are resources available to help you. Book a discovery call with me if you'd like to talk more about this or if you have any questions. I know how to overcome emotional eating and I’ll help you.