Everyone is guilty of it at some point--eating because you're bored or stressed or unhappy. Many times people use food as a way to cope with how they're feeling. Food is never the answer--if you eat to quell an emotion, you really aren't solving anything. The problem will still be there after you've downed that pint of ice cream.
Next time you're feeling a negative emotion and mysteriously find yourself standing in front of the refrigerator, walk away and try one of the following to get your mind off food:
Exercise: Working out makes you feel great after you've finished. Think about how much greater you will feel knowing that you chose to do something good for your body instead of sitting around eating calories you don't need. Search fitness on our site for some routine ideas.
Read a book: Read blogs. Pick up a novel. Whatever you choose, reading is a great way to help your mind stay active and help you learn new things. It’s one of the most productive things you could do for yourself!
Play with your pets: Seriously, who could resist these sweet little faces?
Call me a cat lady if you will—spending time with my pets is such a feel-good activity. Your pets love you no matter what mood you're in and they're always willing to hang out with you. Various studies have proven that just having a pet boosts health and well being. I believe it—they’re so fun to have around.
Stretch: Along the same lines as exercising, stretching is something good you can do for your body that will help keep it limber and help you de-stress. Click here for a routine you can do before bed.
Write: Pissed off? Sad? Write about it. So many people find release in writing their feelings down. It's a way to express what's on your mind without having to speak a word.
Get outside: I don't know about you, but I always feel so much better when the sun is shining.
I feel like I have more energy and it's easier to maintain a positive outlook. Next time you're feeling down, go outside. Go for a walk. Visit a park or garden. You could even just stand outside and let the sun shine down on you for a few minutes. Instant mood booster.
Do you have ways you avoid emotional eating? Share them with us. We’d love to hear!