I eat when I'm happy. I eat when I'm sad. I eat as a treat.
How can I stop emotional eating? I've tried to eat healthier and I always get triggered back into unhealthy eating when something sad happens and I turn to food as comfort. I put on three and a half stone on a year after a bad breakup and just keep adding to it.
Hey OP, Sorry you are feeling low about your emotional eating. In theory it's easy enough to lose weight, and you know how to eat healthily, but in reality, when emotions are tied up with food it can be difficult, and it can be a vicious circle. You feel low, eat for comfort, feel low about eating rubbish and feel lethargic, unlikely to get out and move, lower endorphins so feel lower etc etc.
Exercise is my outlet for when I'm sad or stressed, and it has really helped me through some really tough times. If I can, I get outside and move. Can you find another outlet for your emotions like exercise? Even if it's the last thing I feel like doing, I never, ever regret putting on my trainers for a walk or run. Eating well also helps you to take control of your situation when you are otherwise powerless. By deciding that you want to change what and how you eat, you are starting to take control. That's really positive.
Although over eating can be psychological, it can be helpful to have practical ideas for managing times when you want to over eat. Here are some blogs I've written which might help.
I think emotional eating has been oversimplified by the diet industry, it is rarely as simple as eating for one simple reason. You sound like me that you have lots of eating triggers so it could be quite complex, I am currently reading "Constant Craving" by Doreen Virtue which is interesting (she thinks certain emotions trigger cravings for particular foods) and also enjoyed "Body Clutter" by the women who set up the Flylady website about housework (their theory is that weight is another manifestation of being overwhelmed just as clutter in our homes is)
I also find exercise very therapeutic and good for thinking through emotional stuff.
If something's really bothering me, after acknowledging my initial emotions (and possibly swearing profusely), I try and break it down a bit and decide what, if anything, I need to do about it. That seems to take the sting out of things that might otherwise weigh heavily on me. I used to replay things over in my mind and eventually realised that wasn't at all constructive, since it involved going through similar emotional responses each time without particularly progressing anything.
The thing about emotional eating is that it's invariably habitual, and habits are hard to break and make, and take time to change. It might help to think about the process in a more conscious way e.g. acknowledging how you feel and actively deciding to try something that is not food related. Could you make a list of non food things that you enjoy doing, that could distract you when you next feel the urge to comfort eat?