Emotional Eating

“Betcha Can’t Eat Just One”

By | Emotional Eating, Food/Joyful Eating, Nutrition | No Comments

There’s something about Trader Joe’s Roasted Plantain Chips that make me feel as though I can’t eat just one. But, I know from experience that if I eat as many I feel compelled to, I will feel sick.

I  remember an old ad campaign for Lay’s potato chips that challenged us to control ourselves with a bag of chips by saying “Betcha can’t eat just one”. Well, they had a point. It’s pretty, darn hard. I discovered that the more processed the food, the more likely it is to trigger the “I can’t have just one” response. Read More

Does Fat-Talk Make You Hungry?

By | Body Image/Self Worth, Emotional Eating | No Comments

“I feel fat.” I never liked saying it, but based on how much I used to say it, either out loud or to myself, you’d think it was one of my favorite phrases.  The expression spreads like a virus from woman to woman. It pops up at preteen slumber parties, in high school locker rooms, at suburban dinner parties, downtown bars and black tie awards shows.  “I feel fat.” Read More

Your Body. Your Beloved Friend.

By | Body Image/Self Worth, Dieting, Emotional Eating, Healthy Weight | No Comments

After years of weight fluctuations and yo-yo dieting, I discovered that pushing and prodding myself to lose weight was, paradoxically, a weight gain strategy.” – Alison Ross, LMFT

It’s January, the month of dieting. You signed up for a diet, got to the gym, shopped the perimeter of the market where the lean meats and produce are and spent the time to chop up and prepare a nutritious meal. Let me be the first to congratulate you on a job well done!

Making your nutritional needs a priority is no small feat.  Especially when it’s a struggle to find time to brush your teeth! A “congratulations” might seem like a little thing. So little, in fact, that you didn’t realize you needed it. Sure, you went bonkers for the sweet, crayon scribbles that your daughter made. And you showered compliments on the co-worker who helped with that colorful graph. You generously validated and praised those around you. But were you on the receiving end of your own kindness?

Most dieters get into a bad habit of acting with disregard or even cruelty toward their bodies. They rage at themselves for wanting cake, deny themselves food when hungry, tug at their sides to see if they’re still curvy, push themselves into pants that are too small, avoid social situations or other activities until they reach their goal weight and put themselves on the scale to measure their worth. Read More

A Weightless Resolution for 2015

By | Body Image/Self Worth, Dieting, Emotional Eating, Intuitive Eating | No Comments

Weight loss is the most common new years resolution. But in my office the other day, I heard a weightless resolution that was music to my ears. “I just want to heal,” she said. “I want to stop wishing I lived in someone else’s body. I want to stop abusing myself with food.”

“You’ve come to the right place, “ I replied with certainty. Most people need a bit more convincing that an internal shift in the way they see and treat their bodies is a more effective way to get healthy than the usual cut-out-carbs-and-get-to-the-gym resolution. Read More

When Your Daughter Starts Hating Her Body

By | Body Image/Self Worth, Dieting, Emotional Eating, Intuitive Eating | One Comment

The Jenny Craig representative whispered my weight in my ear and wrote it down in the first box on my weekly weight log. The number rang like a death sentence in my 12-year old ear as I joined my mother for my first official attempt at dieting. The trip to the diet center was my mother’s loving and well-intended response to my growing body anxiety.

I was called an “elephant” at my new school and it broke both of our hearts. The obvious answer seemed that I should learn how to eat right so that I could lose weight and never again be bullied. What neither of us realized was that the diet actually colluded with the bully. It was a subtle and unintended message from my mother that the bully was right. He was simply pointing out my obvious flaw and I was the one who needed to change. Read More

I’ll Take That “To Go”

By | Dieting, Emotional Eating, Intuitive Eating | No Comments

Our stomachs can’t tell time. When the clock strikes noon, our bodies might not be ready to eat. Yet many of us are in the habit of eating by the clock instead of listening to our bodies. I learned how to honor my stomach. And I am teaching my children to do the same. 

Two plates of pasta and fruit sit in front of my children at a restaurant. My hungry son is devouring the food on his plate. My not-hungry daughter is sculpting her noodles into a statue. Read More

If Only Chocolate Could Solve This

By | Emotional Eating | 4 Comments

I have a history of finding sweetness in food when life gets hard. But I’ve learned that chocolate isn’t a solution. It certainly can’t solve the pain I feel as I lose my mother to Alzheimers. By staying present, instead of numbing out, I am finding light in the darkness.   

A few years ago I received the news that my mother was in the final stage of Alzheimer’s disease and had less than three years to live. The disease started to take my mother when she was only fifty-five years old. Within a decade, it viciously stole her mind, memory, voice and identity.

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A Visual Dessert

By | Dieting, Emotional Eating, Intuitive Eating | No Comments

Ray Eames invented the “visual dessert” and served it to her dinner guests. It is a wonderful example that dessert doesn’t always have to be food. It can be anything we find sweet.

I recently watched the documentary EAMES: The Architect and the Painter. It portrays the life and artistic contributions of Charles and Ray Eames, a couple who are regarded as some of America’s most important designers.

In it, their friend, Kevin Roche, tells a story about a dinner he attended in their home. When the main course ended, Ray Eames served three bowls of flowers for her guests to admire. She called it a “visual dessert”. Read More