Are even your fat-pants starting to feel a little snug around the elastic waistband? Have you been consumed by a busy schedule and are only now starting to realize your six-pack looks more like a keg? It could be that overeating has gotten the better of you when you weren’t looking. It might be time to take a long, hard look at the reasons why you overeat in order to develop a weight loss plan for your future.
1. Emotional longing
Emotional longing can play a big part in overeating. Consciously or not, unfulfilled needs like sexual intimacy or lack of parenting can cause an individual to over-indulge in food. The loss of a parent, a divorce, or even a failed friendship can lead to overeating.
2. Career stressors
Career stressors are another culprit when it comes to packing on the proverbial pounds. A belittling boss, an inept coworker, or complaining customers are enough to send an emotional eater diving headlong into the fridge. Ignore negative people and negative feedback. There’s always someone who may want to bring you down. If you pay attention to their rude words, your life won’t be better and your waistline won’t be slimmer.
3. Unfulfilled dreams
Delayed dreams can lead to overeating when there is no hope of fulfilling those dreams on the horizon. Dreams of a move to a warmer climate, entrepreneurial aspirations, or dreams of a home filled with new furniture are enough to send an individual into a binge-eating tailspin when the future looks bleak.
4. Wrong food combos
Although it might seem counter-intuitive, it could be that you are eating the wrong combinations of foods. If you tend to eat lots of high-glycemic foods, you are going to be hungry most of the time. Opt instead for foods that are slow to convert to sugar and you just might find yourself eating a great deal less than you did previously.
Boredom can play a big part in subconscious overeating. Reclining in front of the television instead of busying your hands with a video game can make you reach for a bowl of chips or popcorn. The simple act of getting off of the couch and away from temptations can cut those food cravings drastically. Go outside and mow the lawn, dead-head the flowers, or walk around the block to dislodge those nagging cravings from your brain.
Friendships can play a part in a pattern of overeating too. If all of your social activities are based around food, it is going to be difficult to abstain from overeating. Even physical activities like playing baseball or rollerblading with friends are often followed by an evening of beer drinking or cocktails at the bar. Liquid calories count!
7. Bad habits
Addiction substitution is an often-overlooked trigger. Whether you are cutting back on cigarettes or weaning yourself off of a social addiction like Twitter or Facebook, turning to food is an easy trap to succumb to. When trying to get rid of a bad habit, find a new hobby. This way, you won’t have time for eating.
Location can play an important role in overeating. If all of your meals are consumed in front of the computer screen or television set, you are likely to eat more than if you sat at the table for your meals. When eating, leave your phone in the other room. Focus on the meal you’re eating, not your gadgets.
9. High-sugar breakfasts
High-sugar breakfasts can cause you to overeat throughout the rest of your day. Put down the banana and the oatmeal and opt for a high-protein breakfast instead. Can you say bacon? Even if you watch your calorie intake, having a healthy portion of high-protein food like eggs for breakfast won’t ruin your waistline.
10. Pre-packaged snacks
Pre-packaged snacks can cause you to overindulge since your brain automatically assumes you need to finish off everything in the package. Instead of eating an entire bag of chips, opt for just enough to fill a small saucer. You will still be enjoying the flavor without consuming every last spicy morsel in the bag.
Did any of these ten reasons for overeating ring true for you? Do you think building an awareness of your triggers will help you cut back on your calories? Mindfulness can play a huge role in overcoming food challenges. Maybe it’s time for more thoughtful food consumption habits?