Don't Let This Holiday Season Turn You into an Emotional Overeater
(NORTH ANDOVER, Mass) PRNewswire/ -- This time of year brings lots of cheer but also its fair share of stress and anxiety. Often these feelings, both positive and negative, translate into urges to overeat as a way of coping; and let's face it, there are lots of opportunities to do so all season long.
We may think we are only going to have one piece of mom's apple pie, but how many of us stop there?
"That pie often opens the floodgates to cravings, and many of us have spent holiday season after holiday season telling ourselves to have just one little treat. Instead we binge our way through, not only the holiday season, but also well beyond the New Year," says Clinical Psychologist Dr. Denise Lamothe, a leading expert on emotional eating.
If one of the ways you cope with getting through the holiday season is by turning to food for comfort, consider these tips from Dr. Lamothe on how to survive this season without emotionally overeating your way through it. Try these four to start:
1. Reserve time each day just for yourself. If you don't, you are likely to become overwhelmed and consequently likely to over-feed yourself as a way to cope with stress. If you set aside moments here and there, you are far more likely to take care of yourself in healthy ways all season long. You will feel more relaxed, balanced and energetic.
2. When you attend a holiday party, allow yourself to eat some healthy protein, fat and complex carbohydrates beforehand to avoid arriving with your appetite in overdrive. Sip on water with lemon, and steer yourself towards the healthier choices at the buffet table.
3. Write reminder notes on small cards that you can carry with you. You might write something like, "Focus on conversations, guests and fun -- not the food." Keep repeating these reminders to yourself when you have an opportunity. This practice will keep you balanced, and you will arrive home feeling relaxed and powerful instead of guilty and physically ill.
4. Enjoy the spirit of the season and remember to do only what YOU want to do and decline needless chores, chaos and calories. Keep your needs in the foreground and delegate all you can!