30 Days of Mindful Eating: Patterns

Is there a certain time of day where your urges and cravings are harder to fight off? Think about this and look for patterns. Write about when your cravings seem unmanageable, then write about why you think this might be happening based on your current eating patterns. 

For me, I don’t have cravings at a certain time of day, but in a certain state of mind.

95% of the time, I don’t have cravings because I almost always eat what I want. There’s nothing that’s ever “off limits.” Yet I am, without a doubt, an emotional eater.

When I crave something, it very rarely has to do with the actual food itself and more the quantity. The act of eating is, well, relaxing. (Serotonin is involved in the digestive system, after all.)

It never fails. Whenever I have a hectic day, when something unplanned happens, or I’m being pulled in a million different directions, I completely lose track of my hunger and appetite. Instead, I just want food. All of it. Anything that I can chomp on while doing whatever it is that I need to do. Something that’s pleasurable and can pre-occupy my hurried brain so I don’t feel any more stressed or anxious about cooking meals, what I want to eat, if it’s good for me, and so on.

The cause, I don’t believe, is my eating patterns. Instead, it’s a coping pattern.

After eating, say, a full box of pop tarts because the internet went out, I have a call, the doorbell is ringing, and, oh my god, the dog won’t stop barking, I never feel good. Who would?

I’d like to focus on changing my response to stress, instead. Before I turn to my comfort foods, it’d be a million times more productive to actually create some space for myself to breath. To step away from my anxiety for just a few moments. Then, with a clear head, come back to deal with whatever needs to be dealt with. And eat some donuts, if absolutely required.

Black Iron Nutrition is offering a 30 Day Mindful Eating Challenge that includes journal prompts and tasks to help bring more mindfulness to our relationships with food. And I’m in! This post is in response to today’s prompt to keep myself accountable and get the most out of my participation. If you’re interested in joining the free challenge, sign up at Black Iron Nutrition’s website here.

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