Eating Because You’re Depressed and What to Do About It

Eating Depressed image

Depression plays havoc with our eating habits

How often have you eaten something just for the sake of eating something… because it was there?

I am sure you can answer that easily without having to lend too much thought to it. Hey, if it’s chocolate, I am there like anyone else! It’s one thing to eat something because it is there, it has appeal.

It is another thing all together to eat something because it’s there and your mood has you feeling so down or agitated that eating seems to be the only thing to do, or in some cases, the most destructive choice to punish an already depressed mindset.

Sound familiar?

Depression is a common mental illness that is estimated to affect 20-25% of the population at any given time. There are varying degrees of depression and different types, but for the most part how one feels about oneself while depressed is anything but good. It wouldn’t be called depression if you felt happy!

One of the effects of depression for many people is emotional eating – eating because one is depressed or using food as a distraction/relief much the same way as a substance such as alcohol or drugs. Just as alcohol and drugs have detrimental effects on physical and mental health, so does overeating. Emotional eating doesn’t always translate to overweight issues but in our weight loss service we often see folks who’ve gained weight because of emotional eating and helping with the emotional eating issues as part of a weight loss program helps them regain control of their weight.

They say that it takes anywhere between 21-28 days to develop either good or bad habits (doing the same thing daily consecutively for this duration).

Many people who suffer with bouts depression usually go through weeks feeling down or just blah. It is during this time that food (overeating and/or junk foods) become vices for individuals coping with or dealing with their depression. It is during this period many people will become hooked on binging on junk food or overeating to either mask the symptoms of their depression, or to serve as some kind of diversion.

Furthermore, many people who are depressed become lethargic, apathetic or complacent to doing anything, so idle hands literally become evil hands – it doesn’t take much effort to begin becoming a compulsive eater!

The key to not becoming a “depressed eater” or overcoming compulsive eating  because you feel depressed begins with a mind shift – knowing that there are other ways and activities to entertain, occupy and distract the depressed mind that are healthier. Individuals have to learn to stop “seeding” their minds with negative thoughts which add to the inadequate feelings they already possess, as well as their need to relieve those feelings through eating.

Excessive eating only compounds things and makes individuals feel worse than they already are!

What can you do if you are a depressed eater?

How do you change your irrational mindset? Easy… one positive thought at a time!

Focus on positive thoughts as well as activities. Read self-help books or speak to a therapist to help refocus your mind. Cognitive behavioral therapy is a wonder aid in fixing irrational mindsets.

Engage in hypnosis under a trained therapist or use self-hypnosis C.D.s  to help retrain the mind. Hypnosis is great because it helps individuals calm their racing and irrational thoughts by replacing them with suggestions for healthier thoughts and living choices.

Just because you are depressed doesn’t mean you have to gain weight and lose control of your life. Conversely, feeling depressed and thinking depressed thoughts is a sign that your thought processes need to be modified and optimized.

Check out this MP3 session to help end your emotional overeating here.

Dr Peter
Staff Writer
Free At Last Hypnosis

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