Find out more about the way you eat and how it can affect your everyday life.
1. The Emotional Eater
This type of eater usually finds themselves consuming food based on their feelings at that moment; to celebrate when they’re happy, to comfort them when they’re sad, to fill the gaps or lessen the anxiety when they’re bored or restless. They aren’t thinking about how it’s going to affect them later; it’s about satisfying what they feel right at that moment.
This type of person is someone who loves routine. Staying on schedule is important to them, and in theory, they like to eat healthily and exercise regularly. If this person falls off track though, it can really make it hard for them to get back into the swing of things. Someone like this might “cheat” and later feel that they’ve ruined their eating routine for the week. This causes them to lose motivation to continue eating well. Another part of the habitual eater is eating even when they are not hungry, simply because this is what they are used to. Routine is this person’s weakness.
3. The External or Unconscious Eater
Someone that lacks self-control might fall into this category. Unconscious eaters often don’t realize how much or what they’re eating because they’ll indulge in whatever is in front of them. These people see food they like or something that looks good and they can’t help themselves. The advertising world feeds on this weakness. Most of society today has fallen into the culture of having what they want, when they want it. It is often identified as a form of freedom but in truth, real freedom is being able to say ‘no’.
4. The Critical Eater
Someone who has all-or-nothing thinking usually falls into this category. Critical eaters are usually familiar with the mechanics of dieting and have probably tried out several kinds of diets and exercise techniques. The black and white thinking can get in the way though, causing them to either be fully on a diet or totally neglect it altogether. This precipitates yoyo dieting, which results in constant weight gain and loss.
This is someone who really enjoys their food. They indulge simply for the taste and appreciate every bite. These people will not rush a meal and will always try the new and interesting things on the menu. They may finish the entire plate even after they are full because every bite is precious. The problem for this person is that the pleasure of eating is not worth giving up for losing those extra pounds.
6. The Energy Eater
Do you ever walk up 3 flights of stairs and feel like you just conquered the world? And that now you must deserve a treat for all of that exercise you did? You may just be an energy eater. Although they might be into health, exercise and healthy snacks, the energy eater’s problem stems from the distorted perception of how much energy they are using vs how much they are eating. They often eat too much of the good stuff, making their efforts ultimately ineffective.
So, What Now?
Becoming aware is always the first step to change. And there is no such thing as a quick fix. But here are some tips to help with your everyday lifestyle:
Emotional Eater: Finding alternate, healthy, coping mechanisms for emotions will help lessen the urge to eat. Keeping a food journal can be beneficial as well. Writing down what you were feeling along with what you ate, can help pinpoint your triggers so you can begin to learn how to avoid them.
Habitual Eater: Being organized is the key. Make a food schedule and try to stick to it as best as you can. If you mess up, don’t sweat it. If you get right back on track, you’ll see that you’re still making progress.
External or Unconscious Eater: Avoid areas with limitless food, and if you can’t, then focus hard on potions. When a craving comes up, try to distract yourself until it passes. And most importantly, don’t set traps for yourself by bringing food into your house that you’re going to binge eat. Repeat your goals to yourself while your shopping to help keep your mind focused.
Critical Eater: Try to ease up on the rigid eating rules. Approaching food in moderation will help eliminate the constant weight loss and gain cycle. Remember that everybody messes up so don’t let one “cheat” day spiral out of control. Extreme diets tend to fail, so try to remember: balance is key.
Sensual Eater: Appreciating food doesn’t have to be a weakness. Instead, you can learn to channel your appreciation into mindful eating. Eat slowly and appreciate every bite but be conscious about the portion size. Being that the brain takes around 20 minutes to register that you are full, eating slowly will also stop you from overindulging.
Energy Eater: Portions are an essential thing of which to be mindful, especially when you are snacking a lot. More specifically, track exactly what you are eating throughout the day, to be sure that you’re balancing your calorie intake with how much you are burning.