Greetings from a beautiful day in Arnhem, Netherlands as we make our way down the Rhine River to Frankfort. I spent some time at the Kroller-Muller Museum checking out that Van Gogh guy – turns out the master was pretty talented.
So, when you go on vacation, you know how difficult it can be to eat right and not over-indulge in some of the local pilsners (good lord, the pilsners!). Honestly, the food and beers here are so delicious, I’m struggling a bit.
Vacations eventually come to an end, then it’s back to the real world where it’s easier to control your nutrition. BUT, I hear from golfers quite a bit who constantly struggle with stress eating…
And, if you’ve ever had a stressful day (or year!) that affected your eating habits, you are NOT alone.
In a study by Harvard, more than 75% of adults said that stress played a role in their eating during the past month.
This included overeating, eating junk foods, or not eating. Many of them said it happened weekly.
They also said it made them feel sluggish, lazy, disappointed in themselves, and/or irritable (been there).
The good news is that I have a few tips below to stop stress from getting in the way of your results when it comes to food.
But before I get into the tips, it’s important to know WHY stress affects our appetite. Knowing why can help you manage the situation when you’re in it!
When you get stressed, your body releases hormones to help you deal with stress – including adrenaline, insulin, and cortisol.
Not only can these hormones cut your appetite and/or make you crave high-calorie, high-fat foods …
They also can make your body store MORE fat than when you’re relaxed.
This means it’s NOT a willpower issue (very rarely is our health and fitness a willpower problem), but an actual physiological response. Knowing this can help stop you from giving in to it when it happens.
4 Steps to Stop Stress Eating (or Not Eating)
- Own it!
If you’re feeling stressed and notice your appetite is gone OR you start craving junk food, remind yourself that you’re stressed … and focus on dealing with whatever is actually stressing you.
Go for a walk, do a workout, basically MOVE – it’s one of the fastest stress relievers and mood boosters there is. Plus, it can get you out of the situation and into a new perspective.
- Meditate or do deep breathing.
Just 5 minutes can help you feel calmer, more focused, and less stressed.
- Talk it out.
Taking a few minutes to get some support with whatever is bothering you can help you take back control.
And … if this is something you deal with regularly, it can help to talk to a professional who has experience with eating issues.
You’ve got this.
Your #1 Fan,
PS – I know I listed Exercise #2 above, but that is what helps me the most. Check your phone at the door. Get your body moving. And feel great afterward.
Lifting weights is my jam. If that’s the way you prefer to exercise, then I’d check out the 18STRONG Membership.
Then, you just follow along. Check off your sets. And before you know it…”serenity now”.