Are You an Emotional Eater?

Maybe you are and you don’t even know it.  That’s how I felt today while doing some grocery shopping.  Here’s the story.

I found myself doing some grocery shopping this morning and the first place I hit up was the snack aisle – OK, the “natural” snack aisle, but snack aisle nonetheless.  Normally I go right to the produce section, spend most of my time there and then move on.  Not this time.  I completely bypassed the produce section even though I walked right into it upon entering the store and went straight to the snack aisle.  After about 5 minutes of picking up packages, reading labels and filling the cart I asked myself, “What are you doing??  Why are you here and why are you doing this?”  

This is the answer I came up with.  It was a gloomy, rainy day here.  Strike one.  I can’t stand rain, especially cold rain.  On days like today I just want to curl up and sleep all day, but I have 2 small children, so that’s just never going to happen.  Strike 2 came when I realized that I was hungry because I did not eat a proper breakfast.  But big strike number 3 came when I remembered that for the next 5 days, while my husband is away on business, I’ll be alone.  Not really, alone, alone, but without him.  It may not be a big deal to some people, but it’s a big deal to me and I don’t like it.  So I was just reaching for easy stuff that I would normally not reach for.  In the end I took some time to think about my decisions right then and there, put most of the packages back on the shelves (I did buy a few – without the guilt) and turned around and headed to the product department. 

Today was the first day that I was mindful of how my emotions try to control my decisions when it comes to food.  I could have purchased all of the snack foods and eaten all of them before my husband gets back home, but how would that make me feel?  I would feel disappointed and guilty that I sabotaged myself.  

Next time you’re feeling gloomy and you find yourself in the grocery store, take some extra time to ask yourself a few questions before making your purchases.  Is this something I would normally purchase?  Why am I buying this product?  How is this product going to make me feel after I eat it?

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