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I am still taken aback every time I think of the answer a patient once gave me when I asked her WHY she ate half a dozen donuts. She said, "What else could I do?"
My patient couldn't figure out a better way of dealing with the demands of her 16-year-old daughter. She temporarily "lost her mind." She was unable to think like the intelligent adult that she was.
I started asking other patients the same WHY question, and kept on getting the same kind of answer, in one way or another telling me that the strength of a craving, the lure of a binge, or the power of food over them, was overwhelming, and they too "lost their minds" to food.
Emotional Eating: Blessing or Curse?
I heard more and more people tell me that their minds were taken over by thoughts about food and weight. They told me that their mind was "occupied" by a force they couldn't understand, and what they wanted as much as weight loss was liberation from this preoccupation.
In fact, there are 17 million Americans who have this same mental struggle even though they maintain a normal weight.
So why do YOU eat too much after you have committed to a diet and told yourself you are not going to do that anymore? On one level the answer is simple and obvious. You eat too much when you think you HAVE to use food to reduce your stress level or get away from some uncomfortable feeling or thought because you BELIEVE that you don't have any other way of doing that.
Then food becomes a tranquilizer... an instant, always available medication that shuts down your mind. At those moments emotional eating is a BLESSING.
But when those moments pass, and you realize you have a bad habit of using food as a tranquilizer TOO often, and you understand that this is the single most sabotaging factor in your weight control struggle that makes you break your diet every time, then you know that emotional eating is a CURSE.
Control Your Binges
If you have struggled with your weight and quit ... Continue
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