Having the right mindset

  • Be aware of your negative self-talk.
  • Maintain a “deceptive brain message” thought log.
  • Assess your feelings
    • Locate the real source of and address your feeling(s).
    • Include how you feel in your DBM log.
  • A few common deceptive brain messages that can hinder success:
    • I’m not good enough.
    • I should have/I shouldn’t have.
    • I’m crazy/I’m a sick person.
    • I’m a bad person/I’m not as good as…
    • I don’t matter/Everyone else is more important than me.
    • I have no control.
    • I am unlovable/No one likes me/I will be alone forever.
    • All of my worth is in taking care of others/all I’m good for is…
    • I don’t deserve to be happy—I deserve to suffer or be punished.
    • I have an urge to escape reality/crave something that is not good for me or my goals.

Food and Mood Management

  • “Healthy” food helps to stabilize our moods.  A well balanced diet can lower our blood sugar, blood pressure and reduce levels of cortisol…the stress hormone.
  • Elevated cortisol levels are present in chronic stress, sleep deprivation and depression.  Cortisol can also increase the activity of the enzymes that are responsible for laying down belly fat (BMI). 
  • Omega-3s can reduce cortisol levels. An inadequate intake of Omega-3s can have a profound effect on one’s mood.  Marine-derived sources have been shown to improve symptoms of depression.  Salmon and other types of fish are excellent sources of Omega-3s.
  • According to researchers, 75% of overeating is caused by our emotions. Therefore, dealing with emotions appropriately is ESSENTIAL.
  • Focusing our mental energy on food distracts us from facing our feelings.

Understanding the relationship between eating habits and your emotions

Am I an Emotional Eater?

  • Do you eat more when you’re feeling stressed?
  • Do you eat when you’re not hungry or when you’re full?
  • Do you eat to feel better (to calm and soothe yourself when you’re sad, mad, bored, anxious, etc.)?
  • Do you reward yourself with food?
  • Do you regularly eat until you are uncomfortable?
  • Do you feel powerless or out of control around food? If so, chances are you’re riding an emotional roller coaster

Food is necessary to maintain life. Food also has a social status: it is connected with our concept as a social being.  As humans evolved beyond eating to just survive, our relationship with food changed from necessity to pleasurable necessity.

  • Many high calorie-fat-sugar-salt foods offer little nutrients, but we have learned to associate taste with the expectation of an elevated mood. 
  • Research demonstrates that the brain releases b-endorphins, a natural pleasure chemical, when we eat our favorite foods.  For some people that might be ice cream, for others…enchiladas.  
  • The brain does not care what we eat, only that we LOVE TO EAT IT. As such, a relationship develops that often runs opposite of our health goals.