Comfort eating is more common than you may realize. People struggle with controlling emotional eating especially when they’re under a lot of stress. If this is the case for you, here’s what you should know:

  1. No matter how much advice on how to stop emotional eating you’ll seek, it all comes down to knowing how to manage your emotions first. Emotional eating is driven by the attempt to manage some negative emotions you may be experiencing. For example, if you’re sad, you may want to feel better by eating dessert or something tasty. However, if you want to stop stress eating, you should find another way of controlling your negative emotions. 
  2. Food is not a solution to boredom. Emotional eating also includes the moments when you eat simply because you have nothing better to do. You may way to fill an empty schedule by eating delicious foods, but this is not always a great idea. To stop boredom eating, try to seek interesting activities that will be better for your health in the long run.

To prevent stress eating, you can try recognizing how your emotions trigger your eating behaviors. This means that you’ll want to pay attention to when you are most likely to binge on food. By observing the link between your feelings and food, you’ll become better and better at controlling emotional eating. 

However, keep in mind that you’ll need a lot of practice to stop emotional eating. Even if you have days when you fail, this doesn’t mean that you’re not progressing. Instead, stay focused on the process, be kind to yourself, and do your best to understand your emotions and work with them. 

Controlling emotional eating is a psychological matter rather than a behavioral one. Therefore, stop eating your feelings first and see how this improves your life. 

Asked by: Alice H.

CBT Psychologist / Cognitive Neuroscientist

Teodora is a cognitive neuroscientist with a background in Psychology and Integrative Psychotherapy. She has experience working in clinical trials with Alzheimer’s and Dementia patients and adults with various mental health diagnoses. She has an integrative approach towards mental health and aims to help people recognize the importance of physical, emotional, and spiritual health to their overall mental wellness.