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Sun, Jan. 19

Guest Column - Diet Center’s Weight Loss Tip of the Week: Why do I do this to myself?

Eunice Mesick

Eunice Mesick

One reason why people turn to food is to avoid facing unpleasant emotions. Hi, this is Eunice with Diet Center.

It can be very difficult to face our feelings, and a lot easier to take comfort in food. Ignoring our feelings won’t make whatever is bothering us go away. Identifying your feelings will help you understand what you are experiencing so that you can address a situation and improve it. Enduring unpleasant emotions is necessary in order to process them.

The next time you feel the urge to binge or indulge yourself to feel better, try facing your feelings first. Think about what is causing you to feel the way you do, and how you can improve the situation without food. You may need to cry, turn to a friend, or address the actual situation or person that is making you unhappy.

Then there are those of us that celebrate with food.

Many significant events in life are celebrated with food. Food is also there when everyone else has left. Is it any wonder that our unconscious mind associates food with comfort, control, acceptance, self-worth, confidence, or happiness? Food doesn't provide any of these things.

There are many sensory associations that trigger certain eating behaviors. For example, many people desire something sweet after dinner. It may be that after you eat something savory that taste on your palette triggers an association for something sweet.

You can retrain your palette!

Whenever you have the feeling that you just have to eat something sweet after dinner, it may be that your unconscious mind has linked flavors and sensory data to initiate this behavior. You can retrain your palette by making a conscious effort to practice new behaviors. Instead of eating sweets, drink water, brush your teeth, or begin some other enjoyable activity that doesn’t involve food.

In addition, you should know what you’re eating. Keep a food diary, and write down everything that you eat. This will help make your conscious mind aware of what you are eating. When you know what is good for you and practice good behaviors, you can retrain your mind to help you achieve your goals.

Setting goals are important to your long-term success. Successful people set goals to monitor their progress and motivate themselves to accomplish tasks important to them. It is important that your goals are truly yours. Think about the goals you have set for yourself. Who benefits most from these goals? Are you striving to please your spouse, friends, family, or doctor? Maybe your goals were set as a result of someone else’s prompting and not your own ideas.

For example, are you trying to lose 10 pounds because your doctor said you should? You will only succeed at achieving your weight loss goals if you find meaningful reasons for making changes in your lifestyle.

Thank you for reading Diet Center’s tip of the week. If you are struggling with weight loss, please call me today at 928-753-5066, or stop by at 1848 Hope Ave. in Kingman.

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