7 Ways To Minimize Stress-Based Overeating
When stressed out or anxious, some people turn to food for comfort. However, what may be soothing at the time can make you feel worse – and weigh more – in the end. If you tend to turn to food as a way to cope with a stressful situation, consider the following seven tips:
- Don’t drink caffeine or alcohol when stressed. These can heighten or prolong your anxiety or a depressed mood and worsen its side effects. The common add-ons to these beverages also typically add many unwanted calories.
- Drink plenty of water throughout the day. This can help quell the pangs of an empty stomach and promote a healthy digestive system. It will also facilitate better detoxification through the kidneys.
- Keep your blood sugar levels stable by eating several small, nutritious meals rather than three large ones. Focus on higher fiber and filling options like vegetables and nuts with a focus on chewing slowly and enjoying your meals.
- Make sure your meals or snacks incorporate omega-3 fatty acids. Include walnuts, Alaskan salmon and freshly ground flaxseed in your diet. The fats may aid in mood enhancement in addition to helping to lower inflammation in the body.
- When snacking, take out one portion size and then close and put away the package. Leaving it open on the counter leads to continued munching.
- Incorporate foods rich in magnesium, which helps relax muscles, into your diet. Whole grains, legumes, vegetables, nuts and seeds are good sources. These also tend to be more filling, curbing over-eating
- Above all, be aware of your eating habits. If you find yourself eating to combat stress, limit yourself to small portions, enough so you can savor the taste or texture. Then go for a walk or practice meditating: both are proven, healthier ways to address stress. Also make mindful efforts to prevent mindless eating by keeping the pantry and refrigerator stocked with only whole foods.
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