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Are You Eating for the Wrong Reasons?
Getting over an overeating habit

By Julie Davis
HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, July 28, 2017 (HealthDay News) -- You don't have to have an eating disorder, like binge eating, to have an overeating habit.

When stress, anxiety or even boredom -- rather than hunger -- cause you to eat (and eat and eat), you might be experiencing emotional eating, with food serving as a way of soothing yourself, according to the Cleveland Clinic.

The habit can become so ingrained that you're eating all the time. Even if it's just a bite here and there, all those calories can add up and prevent weight loss.

Start by getting a handle on exactly how much you're eating. Each day, use a print or digital journal to write down everything you consume, including details like portion size, time of day, and how you were feeling when you reached for the food. Then add up the day's calories. Being more conscious of your true intake will show you how far over the limit you're going, when, and even why.

One way to break an emotional eating habit is to reach for an activity that you do with your hands when the urge to eat strikes, like a crossword puzzle or knitting. Finding ways to manage your underlying stress and anxiety will help, too.

Don't try to go in the other direction by starving yourself. That could just boomerang into a binge.

Realize that you might need the help of a nutrition counselor if you really can't distinguish between true hunger and eating out of habit.

Another option is joining a support group like Overeaters Anonymous where other members share their tips for overcoming overeating.

More information

The Cleveland Clinic has helpful tips to help you break a pattern of emotional eating.

Copyright © 2017 HealthDay. All rights reserved. URL:http://consumer.healthday.com/Article.asp?AID=723828

Resources from HONselect: HONselect is the HON's medical search engine. It retrieves scientific articles, images, conferences and web sites on the selected subject.
Habits
Hyperphagia
Anxiety
Hunger
Mental Health
Eating Disorders
Bites and Stings
The list of medical terms above are retrieved automatically from the article.

Disclaimer: The text presented on this page is not a substitute for professional medical advice. It is for your information only and may not represent your true individual medical situation. Do not hesitate to consult your healthcare provider if you have any questions or concerns. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting a qualified healthcare professional.
Be advised that HealthDay articles are derived from various sources and may not reflect your own country regulations. The Health On the Net Foundation does not endorse opinions, products, or services that may appear in HealthDay articles.


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