Monday, April 9, 2012

How to stop unhealthy, emotional eating

photo Source:
 "I am stressed at work", "My kids are driving me crazy", "My boyfriend/girlfriend just broke up with me"-- all excuses for eating unhealthy foods.

"Unhealthy" emotional eating is often spotlighted in TV, usually represented by a woman eating large quantities of dairy ice-cream to find comfort in the bottom of the carton, or fill a void. That void is called Hunger.

From what I have observed, there is no such thing as emotional eating. The media uses this phrase to propagate people's confusions further about diet & lifestyle. This phrase justifies eating small quantities of "un-food".
Eating Small portions of food is the number one way people try to lose weight; then when they're body alerts them that they haven't been eating enough, the mind catches up to the bodies warnings, and they binge on unhealthy foods to catch up on the calories they have been missing out. 
We associate eating large quantities of food with gaining weight. And many times it's true these people are gaining weight by over eating; however, it is WHAT they are over eating on that creates fat. Athletes like Michael Phelps eats 6000+ Calories a day. 
Ever notice that some people can eat a lot and never gain a pound, then you see the opposite-- a woman that nearly starves herself is over weight. 
~Lets also keep in mind, another false perception propagated by the media is that an over weight person is unhealthy, and our skinny model is healthy. Yet, the overweight person may eat healthy but is slowly losing weight while the Skinny model is smoking, drinking alcohol, and stays up partying till morning hours. 

 When I went Vegan, nearly a decade ago, I never once restricted my Calories. I intuitively ate several plates of potatoes, corn, beans, peas, biscuits, and rice every night. I have altered my diet a bit by adding an abundance of Fruit throughout the day, and I still continue to have Calorie dense meals at night. Sometimes I have a large Salad before I have my dinner of Rice, potatoes, or beans. 
I haven't gained any fat in the last decade of eating a diet higher in Calories, higher in Carbohydrates, higher in Sugar-- if anything I have gained muscle. 
The only modification I have made in the last decade is adding an abundance of Fruit, and lower Fat intake, no Oils used for frying, no Salt. I keep my Fat and Sodium intake low.

 My typical Breakfast is 1-2 Cantaloupes or 1 Watermelon or 7-12 bananas, while Lunch is 14 bananas or several cans of Peaches, etc. I do not have the urge to eat cakes, cookies, ice creams (even if they're Vegan) because I am eating large quantities of Sugar from Fruits

How often have you felt ashamed from eating bananas? Never. What if you ate 10 bananas?-- Would you feel ashamed then? No!
Now, how often have you felt ashamed from eating 10 Oreos? Always. Lets do a comparison:

10 bananas: 1050 calories & 4 grams of fat (with 270 grams of carbs & high in most vitamins)
10 Oreos: 520 calories & 23 grams of fat (with 81 grams of carbs & no nutritional value)

Oreos is used as an example because Oreos USED to be my guilty pleasure when I was High Fat Vegan. Looking above at the comparison, you'll see that eating 10 bananas gives you the most out of your food in comparison to the oreos. Secondly, Oreos don't have enough calories or carbs to allow you to function during work, school, a workout, or help your kids with homework. Oreos contain many different ingredients as well, like oils, flours, preservatives. Little do people realize, Chocolate is also a Drug.

Oreos are not appealing to me anymore. In fact, the more I eat something, the more I crave it. You would think I would be tired of eating bananas since I eat so many everyday, but the opposite is true. I want my banana smoothie every day!
"Emotional eating" and other similar phrases allow you to make excuses for perpetuating this merry-go-round of unhealthy eating. Women of my height and weight probably do not eat as much as me, but they are overweight because they eat small portions of fatty foods, whereas I gorge on mono meals of Fruit, rice, vegetables and High Carbohydrate (low fat) Plant foods. 

To get rid of this punishment mindset, instead, eat till you feel FULL on the healthy foods like Fruit, vegetables, and greens-- whether that means you're eating 500 calories in one meal or 1000 calories. Does it make any sense to eat small portions to justify eating fatty foods, or does it make sense to feel reach satisfaction (and long term goals) by eating larger portions of fresh, ripe, whole, Plant foods?
The idea is to change your perspective about HOW and WHAT to eat.

In order to feel satiated, motivated, and energized, you must not restrict the amount of carbohydrates you eat in a day. If You need to eat a LOT to feel good -- that's ok! Most women that come to this lifestyle eat up to 4000 calories a day!
Women should obtain up to 2500+ calories a day, while men 3000+ calories, depending on their physical exertion.
The reason most people "think" they need to restrict their calorie or carbohydrate-intake is because they're getting all of their calories and carbs from foods that are high in fat. Of course Carbohydrates and Sugar are guilty by association with the Fat content of Foods. Society doesn't want to believe that the Animals they are eating are making their own bodies a graveyard.

High fat foods directly correlate to feeling "comatose", "slow", "depressed".  Instead of getting your calories from Low-carb, high-fat foods (meat and dairy products, eggs), switch your Calorie sources to Fruit and vegetables.
Fruits and Vegetables are most Optimal because they have a larger spectrum of Nutrients, these nutrients are how we prevent cancer and disease. Much of T Colin Campbell's work from The China Study, expressed Animal Protein and Animal Fat turned on susceptibility of Cancer whereas a Plant based diet turns off susceptibility. 

Because a Vegan diet is low in fat, you feel less sluggish after a big meal. Even if I eat 1 watermelon, or 14 bananas, or 3 bowls of rice-- I still have the energy and vitality to move by body.  

Furthermore, Eating foods that are high in sugar and carbohydrates is instant energy and  nutrients allow us to feel satisfied, in term making us feel happy and fuels the Brain. Fruits like dates and bananas help raise serotonin and glycogen levels, while creating that feeling of happiness and stability. There has been a experiment on performance and function with two Brothers, where one took on a High Fat diet (bacon, eggs, meat) while the other took on High Carbohydrate (rice, potatoes), watch the results here.

So, what foods will make you feel awake, alert, energized, and satiated:  
  • High Carbohydrate / Sugary Fruits, like Dates & Bananas. Because Bananas are cheaper than any other food, they have become my Staple food when I went Vegan. I have eaten approximately 14 bananas every day for the last Three years.
  • Fruits that are low in fat are optimal, and to eat healthy on-the-cheap, buy canned Peaches and Pineapples. In comparison to other canned Fruit, Peaches and Pineapples hold their flavor and shape the best. I wouldn't recommend eating any other canned Fruit, like berries because it'd simply be a jam in a can.
  • Other Fruit options are bottled juice and smoothies. These are quite costly unless the grocery store is having a sale on them. These drinks usually try to adhere to customer demands, like non-gmo, organic, no sugar added or preservatives. I usually buy Orange juice Odwalla brand. Sometimes I get Santa Cruz brand mango puree juices.
  • I mentioned buying Fruit Juices and Smoothies, but a cheaper option is the Concentrated Juices that have been Frozen (see here). I usually buy these because they are an inexpensive option for more Calories. Avoid the ones that add high fructose corn syrup and other preservatives. Flavors I buy are Orange juice and pineapple juice. Simply add the entire contents into a blender with 3+ cups of water and blend into a drink.
  • Other High Carbohydrate options include, Potatoes, Rice, Corn, Beans, and Wheat. These Plant foods are Staples in households in China, Thailand, Korea, Africa, and so on. It is no wonder these countries are so lean-- they eat all the Fruit, rice and potatoes they care for. Potatoes, Rice, Corn, and Wheat are notorious for being genetically modified, but there are other options, for example buying Organic and growing your own Organic vegetables. Plus, I didn't say Potatoes, rice, corn, and wheat are optimal above Fruit, but I do conjecture that these GMO Plant foods are optimal in comparison to the Standard American diet, which consists of Animal flesh, all dairy, eggs.
Below I have posted a video of Durianrider driving this message home, about Emotional Eating of Ants. It's a good laugh.


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