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April Is Stress Awareness Month: Tips To Avoid Stress Eating

April Is Stress Awareness Month: Tips To Avoid Stress Eating

Emotional eating can sabotage your weight loss efforts. Sometimes the strongest food cravings can happen at your weakest points emotionally and it can be easy to turn to food for comfort. When facing a difficult problem or when you are simply just bored, you may find yourself unconsciously eating food to help cure your cravings. Stress eating can quickly lead to weight gain if you do not take the steps to replace food with other healthier habits. If you are prone to emotional eating or eating when you are bored, there are steps you can take to regain control of your eating habits and get back on track with your fitness and weight loss goals.

Why Do You Stress Eat?

Many people look for comfort in food for both physiological and psychological reasons. When you are stressed, the hormone cortisol rises causing an increase in appetite. Just as often as food is used as a “numbing strategy,” it is also a distraction strategy in the same way others might use alcohol or television as a way to create a buffer between themselves and whatever difficult feelings they may be having. Emotional eating is only a bandage for stress rather than a cure. A healthier response is to recognize that stress and negative emotions can happen and are common and that you have to find a sustainable way to cope with them. Whatever emotions drive you to overeat, the result is often the same. Your stress and other negative emotions will come back and you will have the additional burden of guilt about setting back your weight loss goal. 

How To Get Back On Track With Your Eating Habits

When stress and other negative emotions threaten to trigger emotional eating, there are several steps you can take to control your cravings and get you back on track to reaching your weight loss goals. 

Tame Your Stress
If stress is continually contributing to your emotional eating, seek other healthier options to manage your stress. Exercising can benefit not only your physical health but your mental health as well. Working with a personal trainer or weight loss coach can help motivate you to get into the gym and complete your workouts so you can look and feel your best. A personal trainer will also be able to give you some tips and tricks when it comes to nutrition so you can fight off your cravings much easier. If working out is not your thing, try meditation and yoga or some deep breathing exercises to help your body return to a calm state.

Keep A Food Diary
Keep track of when you eat, how much you eat, what you eat, and how hungry you are throughout the day. Over time, you may find a pattern that reveals the connection between your mood and food. If you find this connection, you will be able to better know what triggers your food consumption and take steps to avoid certain situations that cause these triggers.

Take Away Temptation
Get rid of all of your favourite junk foods that you tend to grab when you are feeling snacky or stressed. By removing these foods from your home, you will no longer have the option to overindulge in them. Also, try to postpone any grocery shopping you need to do if you are feeling angry or stressed to avoid buying your favourite comfort snacks. 

Snack Healthy
If you feel the urge to snack in between meals, opt for a healthy option instead like eating fruits and vegetables, nuts, or unbuttered popcorn. There are plenty of healthy snack foods available that will cure your cravings but will not contribute to weight gain. Bring a protein bar to work to eat at your desk or make a morning smoothie before work instead of going through a fast food drive-thru. By making better food choices, you will be able to move forwards toward your weight loss goals instead of pushing yourself further away from them. 

Don’t Deprive Yourself
If you are trying to lose weight, you might limit your calorie intake a little bit too much, eat the same foods over and over, and banish all sugary treats. Although you are on the right track to losing weight, depriving yourself of too much can increase your cravings, especially in response to emotional distress. It is still important that you are mainly eating a balanced, nutritious diet, but you can indulge in a treat from time to time to give yourself plenty of variety to curb your cravings. 

Avoid Stress Eating By Working With A Calgary Personal Trainer

With work and a busy schedule at home, it can be easy to get overwhelmed and stressed. How you manage that stress though is up to you. One of the most common ways of dealing with stress and negative emotions is by overindulging in food which can quickly lead to increased weight gain. Working with a personal trainer will give you a new way of handling your stress in a healthy manner while also improving your fitness so you can feel and look your best. Achieve your fitness goals and make yourself stronger mentally and physically by working with a Jensen Fitness personal trainer or weight loss coach today. 

At Jensen Fitness, our personal training, fitness coaching, and weight loss programs will provide you with all of the support you need to achieve your personal goals while helping you sustain your new healthy habits for the long term and improve your overall health. To start your weight loss or fitness journey, contact our team of personal trainers in SE Calgary by calling 1-403-200-0199 or by filling out our online contact form.

FAQ

Q: When will I see results after consistent exercise? 
A: With consistent exercise and a healthy diet, you will notice improvements in your appearance, your fitness, and how you feel overall within 12 weeks. Everyone is different and some people may have more dramatic results after 12 weeks than others.

Q: Can a personal trainer help me with my nutrition?
A: Yes, a personal trainer will be able to give you some tips and tricks when it comes to food habits to help you see better results in the gym. Unless your personal trainer has a nutritional certification, they will not be able to come up with meal plans for you and can only recommend certain food you should be eating. 

Q: How many times should I exercise per week?
A: It is recommended that everyone gets at least 30 minutes of exercise per day, however, if you are embarking on your fitness or weight loss journey, you should be going into the gym at least three times per week.


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Shayne Jensen

Shayne Jensen

Shayne is a passionate entrepreneur and highly experienced business leader in Calgary with expertise in health, fitness and wellness. Growing up in the Rocky Mountains he developed a passion for hiking, mountain biking and snowboarding. And, being a fierce competitor to all sports, he played everything from soccer to tennis to competitive squash, as well as multiple seasons of hockey, football and baseball. In his athletics, Shayne grew to learn and understand that health and fitness set the foundation for a great way of life, and that it allows you to perform better at everything you do while developing the mindset and confidence to become the best version of yourself. At Jensen Fitness, Shayne’s vision is focused on creating optimal performance in individuals while empowering them to become their best selves through health and fitness.


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