Check Your Emotions at the Door Before Dieting

article by Rebecca S. author
Emotions affect how your weight loss program will play out. Here’s how to keep your head in check for optimal weight loss results.

The Emotion Excuse

The simple fact is that it takes emotional strength to stick to a diet, and when we’re down, it’s harder to say no to that tempting piece of comfort food. When you’re looking for an excuse to cheat, you might let your mood convince you that just this once, it’s ok to indulge. The problem is this routine becomes a habit, and before you know it, you’re not on a diet anymore and haven’t been for months.

The opposite might also be true. A reason to celebrate might give you cause to break your diet, and this can also be a recurring habit with the same end results as above. Bottom line, our emotional state cannot be our barometer or green light for breaking our diets.

The Solution: Don’t make your decisions based on your emotions. If you feel like you want to reward yourself or give yourself a break day, that’s fine. Just make sure it’s a logical decision, not an emotional one. This will keep those breaks in check and stop them from becoming habitual.

Emotional Eaters

Even worse than the occasional cheat that becomes a habit are emotional eaters. When these dieters become upset, sad, frustrated, anxious, or depressed, they automatically turn to food (and generally unhealthy food like cake, cookies, chips, or ice cream).

The Solution: Often emotional eating comes in cycles, so learn your pattern, and catch yourself before the fall. If you know you’re going into a tailspin, get rid of any junk food around the house, surround yourself with people who will help support your healthy eating habits during this low period, and stock up on healthier snack alternatives so you aren’t feeling totally deprived.

Good Dieting Produces Good Emotions, Too

The opposite is also true. Good nutrition promotes healthier emotional states according to experts. Our bodies and our brains need the right nutrients in order to function properly. This is obvious when you look at the current status of nutritional and emotional health in the US. The standard American diet that consists of fast food, processed foods, and fatty, sugary foods and beverages lacks the necessary ingredients for healthy emotional functioning. It’s no surprise that anxiety, mood, and depressive disorders are correspondingly on the rise in the United States. Without the right food, our emotions won’t function properly, which is why the best weight loss program won’t restrict the healthy foods you ingest.

So, if you’re looking to shed a few pounds, check out some of the best weight loss programs of today that embody the positive aspects detailed above like Weight Watchers, Jillian Michaels, and Diet.com, and start losing weight the healthy way.