“Why am I so weak willed? Why is it so difficult for me to resist the temptation of over-indulging in so called forbidden foods – ice cream, chocolate, pizza, that very inviting-looking pastry, etc.?” – How often do we get frustrated with ourselves this way?
Like I mentioned in the previous post, our bodies make us crave particular foods and flavours when we are out of balance in some way, whether it is physically, mentally or emotionally. Feeling powerless to resist cravings usually has absolutely nothing to do with willpower.
Physical or rather physiological cravings occur because we have either a reduced store of certain nutrients or an imbalanced diet as a result of either an excess or even drastically reduced portion – often of sugar, salt, or carbohydrates. These types of cravings can happen as a result of poor diet (includes both – over-eating as well as eating less than what you need), over-exercise or no exercise, stress, illness, lack of sleep, or – as a favourite topic of discussion among the ladies – a symptom of pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS).
Cravings related to mental or emotional state are much more complicated, because the root cause cannot be addressed simply by increasing your intake of leafy greens. No food or vitamin supplement can replace this.
Emotional eating can really disrupt your efforts for weight loss. Often, emotional eating leads to consuming too much of our so-called forbidden foods – like the high calorie ones, high fat ones, salty and sweet ones. Eating as a way to suppress or soothe negative emotions, such as stress, anger, anxiety, boredom, sadness and loneliness can never really solve the core issue that led to the disturbance. There is personal inner work to be done to identify triggers and thus we begin our journey to heal.
How to differentiate Physical Hunger from Emotional?
In this journey to heal or even identify that disturbance which leads to the “emotional craving” for certain foods, befriending our body works wonders instead of criticizing ourselves or thinking that we are weak willed. When we make friends with our own body – our own inner guidance – we come to realize that our body is actually strong and that it knows what to do. It will then guide to make right food and exercise choices to achieve your dream bod!
I believe that food is not about calories or fat but about feelings, emotions, the love for food is an enriching and rewarding experience and central to human existence. Along with your body befriend your food. And eat it without any guilt rather eat it with utmost pleasure. (Mind you – I said EAT not Binge 😀 😉 & remember the bit on Physical hunger)
(P.S. – Working to write the last part of the i-Crave series ending with Strategies on dealing with Emotional Eating. Will keep you posted)