We ALL have a food story.
In other words, the relationship we have with food; the one that has been cultivated throughout the course of your life. Our own unique food story is shaped by a collection of experiences over the years. These experiences have the power to change the way we look at food, both positively and negatively.
If you struggle with emotional eating, the first step to overcome it is to get in touch with your food story. This will help you understand why you see food a certain way and who – or what – was involved in shaping your relationship with food.
One of the most important points to remember is that you can CHANGE your food story!
Realize you are not tied to emotional eating forever. You don’t have to cycle through diet after diet, only to regain the weight. When you are willing to do the work to identify and change your internal narrative around nutrition, you can break free of the reigns food has on you!
To uncover your food story, take out a piece of paper or open a Word Doc. Answer the following:
- What foods did I eat as a child? What were meal times like? Who cooked?
- Are there any foods I don’t like or can’t eat? If so, why not?
- Were there any people in my life who said negative things about food or their body?
- Who in my life has been a positive influence in how I feel about food or my body?
- What comments have people made about my eating habits or body? How did they make me feel? Have any of these comments stuck with me?
- Have I ever tried to modify my food intake in some way (diet, allergy, doctor’s recommendations, etc.)? For what purpose?
- When was the first time I ate when I wasn’t hungry (emotionally ate)? What triggered it?
- Have I ever made a conscious decision not to eat, even when I was hungry? Why?
- Foods I typically crave are __________. Foods I can’t stop eating are _____________.
- Think about the words “healthy eating.” How do those words make me feel? What foods come to mind?
- In what ways has society/culture affected my view of my body or food?
- What do I know about nutrition?
- How do I feel about eating as a whole?
Now that you have answered these questions, you can begin to see how your upbringing, people in your life and your environment all have shaped your food story. Awareness is the first step to change!
The next step is learning how to eat mindfully, which is explained in this post.
If you want more guidance, schedule your free coaching session today by calling 720-531-4911 to learn how we can help you break free from emotional eating for good!