How Mindfulness Can Help End Emotional Eating + Free Mindful Eating Guide

Updated: Aug 27

Did you know that the majority of situations that result in overeating is prompted by feelings, and NOT physical hunger?

Emotional Eating describes eating that is influenced by emotions-both positive AND negative. 

People who may be emotionally eating often eat in an attempt to self-soothe or to experience momentary relief from difficult feelings, relieve stress, or simply lack other tools to cope with distress.

Signs of Emotional Eating:

  • Snacking when you do not feel physically hungry or when you are moderately full

  • Experiencing an intense craving for a particular food

  • Not feeling satiated after eating adequate amounts of healthy food

  • Anxiously gathering more food while your mouth is full

  • Feeling emotionally relieved while eating

  • Eating during or following a stressful experience

  • Eating alone to avoid others noticing

  • Numbing Feelings with food

We are ALL emotional eaters, so there is NO reason to feel shame if any of those signs resonate with you.

In fact, many cultures use food as a way to celebrate, deal with grief, connect, and show love- and there is nothing wrong or unhealthy about that. 

However, if it seems that turning to food is the ONLY way you deal with your emotions, it's important to recognize that and seek help in this area. 

One thing that has been helpful for both myself and my clients, is incorporating mindfulness, whenever we feel the desire to eat. 

Mindfulness describes being in the present moment with non-judgmental awareness.

Next time you think you may be pulled to emotionally eat, try this:

Pause for just a brief moment to ask yourself the following questions: 

  1. Am I physically hungry or just bored?

  2. If I'm physically hungry- what sounds good to eat?

  3. If I'm not physically hungry- what do I really need? 

  4. What emotions are present right now?

When you mindfully notice the feelings that prompt eating, you practice bringing your awareness, not your guilt, to your habits.

If you'd like to learn more on mindfulness around eating, grab my free Mindful Eating Guide below.

In Love and Health,

Katie Valley

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How Mindfulness Can Help End Emotional Eating