The Danger of Emotional Eating

Disclaimer: Elise Ho, aka “Dr. Ho” is a Holistic Health & Life Coach. Dr. Ho is NOT a medical doctor, licensed therapist, lawyer, or a bevy of other things. Products or services that Dr. Ho believes in are the only ones that she recommends. Dr. Ho may receive compensation, product, or an affiliate commission on anything you see on this site. This is a personal Website solely reflecting Dr. Ho’s personal opinions. Statements on this site do not represent the views or policies of any organization with which I may be affiliated.

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Emotional Eating  & Coronavirus

 

Are you concerned about the virus?

Do you wonder what is to come?

Is all the concern and worry over the coronavirus causing you to rely on emotional eating for comfort?

 

Emotional eating can hit very suddenly out of nowhere.

However, during these times as we hear about more businesses shutting down, stay-at-home orders rolling out and everything going on across the world, it is not hard to see where emotional eating may become prevalent.

Dangers of Emotional Eating

 

There a number of unhealthy habits that can develop over time if eating activities aren’t monitored closely. One very easy unhealthy habit to fall into is emotional eating. This can go unnoticed because it’s not widely thought of as dangerous compared to life-threatening habits such as illegal drug use, and many say they can simply “exercise more later,” but can eating habits really be a danger to you? We’ll be exploring some of these in the following article.

 

You Tend to Eat Unhealthy Food

 

Emotional eating usually hits very suddenly out of nowhere and seeks out specific cravings to be filled. Often times these powerful cravings are for sugar and fat-filled snacks because of the powerful rush that is experienced after consumption. Seeking out comfort food or food that is connected with positive or nostalgic feelings has been common practice for all of recorded history. Many snack foods (especially candy and baked goods) are associated with memories of fun times or loved ones. Some children develop early obesity when they learn this type of self-soothing. The methods that are used to produce foods of these types typically contain high levels of salt, sugars, fats, and preservative agents.

 

 

 

It is an Unhealthy Way to Cope with Emotions

 

Emotional eating is often used as a way to avoid dealing with complex emotions. Not every trigger will be the same for each person. Triggers can include a range of emotions and feelings including anxiety, boredom, loneliness, sadness, and even joy. The emotional danger is the continued neglect of the real reasons behind these emotions. A feeling of shame or guilt might follow binges. Hiding the behavior from friends or family can make this especially true. A vicious cycle can develop when a person uses eating as a way to escape or distract themselves from reality. For example, a person who seeks food to cope with stress will create a paradox where weight-related health issues arise, and the chosen coping method is food.

 

Weight-Related Health Risks

 

Emotional eating can cause devastating health problems. Beyond the difficulties surrounding obesity, these could include many other health issues. Among these are diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and anxiety. There can also be digestive problems, menstrual problems, and depression. If you are overeating and appear to be experiencing any of these health problems, emotional eating is likely to be a significant factor. Most frightening of all, some of these diseases have dangerous side effects. Unfortunately, these could interfere with medical responder’s efforts to carry out life-saving procedures. Heart disease and diabetes can also weaken the organs and immune system, leaving you susceptible to infectious diseases as well.

 

There is Help For Emotional Eating

 

If your emotions are pushing you t do things you would not normally do there is help. You could work with a Holistic Life Coach, such as myself. We specialize in helping you to gain control of your eating while also working through the catalyst behind that eating. There is also the possibility of working with a Licensed Therapist. Journaling, meditation, and other mind-body practices can be of help. There are also supplements that can be of great help such as CBD for mood or our special blend that also includes boosters for burning fat and losing weight.

 

No matter what you need, the most important thing is to ask for help.

 

Tell me, if you tend to eat your emotions, what can you see changing for you if you were no longer an emotional eater?

 

Naturally Yours,

Elise Ho, Ph.D., D.N.Psy

 

 

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Naturally Yours,
Elise Ho
Ph.D., D.N. Psych.
Behavioral & Mental Health Specialist

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43 thoughts on “The Danger of Emotional Eating”

  1. I’m an emotional eater and I experience this a lot of time. I tend to agree that you go mostly on unhealthy foods as you consider them as “comfort foods.” It’s all about proper nutrition too!

  2. Melanie williams

    Me, me and me! at times I have a tendancy to do this and it can put you right off balance that is for sure x

        1. It is interesting to bring dehumanization into the conversation. Any type of dehumanization is linked to higher anxiety, sadness, and depression. These are all feelings that can also be attached to emotional eating.

  3. Emotional eating really is so bad for your health, but it’s also so easy to do. The food is right there, just waiting to make you feel better about whatever it is that’s weighing on you. It’s important to find healthier ways to cope.

    1. It is easy and it does offer a quick comfort. The long term doesn;t offer that same comfort and can cause other issues. As you memnion, healthier ways to cope are better.

  4. This is very informative! Amidst the pandemic, we have to take care of ourselves! This includes physical and mental health.

  5. I absolutely agree that it is a bad way to cope with emotions. We don’t realize it in the moment but emotional eating must be mindfully avoided at all costs.

  6. I love that you said to ask for help. People feel ashamed or embarrassed and don’t even realize they can do that and it can help.

    1. Thank you. Asking for help is important. People may not know what you need unless you tell them you need help. You do not even have to be fully clear on what that means. Just start the process of asking 🙂

  7. Emotional eating can be pretty overwhelming. Especially after a year of lockdown. Many people are stressed and overwhelmed. It’s good that you’re helping share information about this.

  8. I did so much of this during lockdown! I’m in Australia and our lockdown was crazy strict. So yeah to cope with stress and boredom I sure did a lot of emotional eating. Not good.

  9. so true i have same problem. I always feel like need to eat but cannot even finish it. But we have to change out eating habit.

  10. Emotional eating has really come to light over the past year. I mean, I think we’ve ALL been eating our feelings to one degree or another.

  11. This is something we all have to watch out for. It’s all too easy to eat our feelings. Food makes us feel good when we feel bad and feel even better when we already feel good.

  12. I feel guilty now because I was eating an ice-cream drum stick as I was reading this post! Haha! But on the serious side, thank you for your dedication to such a much needed practice in holistic medicine. And thank you for linking up with us at the Friday Finds Blog Hop over at Wonderfully Messy Mom!

  13. Hello,
    I’m sure there’s a lot of emotional eating going on during this stressful time. Would you consider eating due to boredom to be the same thing? It is something I wonder about.

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About The Author

Dr. Elise Ho

Dr. Elise Ho

Dr. Elise Ho is a Holistic Health & Life Coach with a special interest in emotional health, life alignment, and energy flow.

Elise will partner with you to align your mindset, your energy, your home and your career so that you can live your life's desire with freedom and love.

Elise offers 30 years of experience and multiple certifications and degrees including a Ph.D. in Natural Health and a doctoral degree in Naturopathic Psychology.