Emotional Eating

Emotional eating (sometimes called stress eating) involves using food to make yourself feel better. It is characterized by the act of eating to satisfy emotional needs, rather than to satisfy physical hunger. Food (either consciously or unconsciously) can be a source of comfort in stressful situations. Emotional eating is typically used as a way to numb negative emotions like fear, anger, boredom, loneliness or sadness.  Both major life events and the normal hassles of daily life can cause the types of negative emotions likely to trigger emotional eating. A therapist can help you understand the reasons behind your emotional eating and teach you tools to both recognize and cope with it. If you have been experiencing episodes of emotional eating, reach out to one of TherapyDen’s specialists today. 

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I have worked with many clients over my years in practice with issues related to emotional/disordered eating. Disordered eating is a metaphor for what is unspoken.Together we will look at the purpose the emotional eating serves for you and what is going on in your life that the eating may be expressing. By exploring the stressors in your life we can look at those underlying causes, give them a voice and help you work toward resolving them in a healthy manner.

— Joan Tibaldi, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Saint Augustine, FL

As a CBT therapist, I explain to the client that their binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make them feel temporarily comforted, would not help them feel better about themselves. In fact, overeating usually has the opposite effect and actually makes them feel worse about themselves. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. We will also work on improving your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC
 

I help clients overcome Binge Eating Disorder using mindfulness techniques. I am also trained and experienced in providing evaluation and treatment for clients who are seeking bariatric weight loss surgery.

— Amita Ghosh, Counselor in Newport, KY

As a CBT therapist, I explain to the client that their binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make them feel temporarily comforted, would not help them feel better about themselves. In fact, overeating usually has the opposite effect and actually makes them feel worse about themselves. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. We will also work on improving your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC
 

Unlike other "addictions," I believe it is in many ways harder with food or eating issues, as you have to eat to survive. I offer an intuitive eating approach to give you tools to listen to your body, while at the same time we address the underlying trauma or reasons for the emotional eating. In addition, we will work together to build your repertoire of stress reduction skills. With self-compassion, self-love, persistence and a little support, you can be free from emotional eating for good!

— Krissy Moses, Licensed Clinical Mental Health Counselor in Winter Park, FL

As a CBT therapist, I explain to the client that their binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make them feel temporarily comforted, would not help them feel better about themselves. In fact, overeating usually has the opposite effect and actually makes them feel worse about themselves. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. We will also work on improving your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC
 

As a CBT therapist, I explain to the client that their binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make them feel temporarily comforted, would not help them feel better about themselves. In fact, overeating usually has the opposite effect and actually makes them feel worse about themselves. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. We will also work on improving your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC

As a CBT therapist, I explain to the client that their binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make them feel temporarily comforted, would not help them feel better about themselves. In fact, overeating usually has the opposite effect and actually makes them feel worse about themselves. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. We will also work on improving your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC
 

As a CBT therapist I explain to you that your binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make you feel temporarily comforted, would not help you feel better about yourself. Overeating typically has the opposite effect and actually makes you feel worse about yourself. This would then worsen your overeating. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. Together, you and I will also work on ways to improve your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you will became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC

People who emotionally eat reach for food several times a week or more to suppress and soothe negative feelingsTrusted Source. They may even feel guilt or shame after eating this way, leading to a cycle of excess eating and associated issues, like weight gain. Anything from work stress to financial worries, health issues to relationship struggles may be the root cause of your emotional eating.

— Courtney Cohen, Licensed Clinical Social Worker
 

Our relationships with food are complex and layered and often have less to do with just eating emotionally or out of hunger. *Most* eating is a combination of these two things! We may eat together in session, unpack your beliefs about food and your body, or teach you skills to pause and notice what's happening for you when emotional eating starts. I am confident that you can have a better relationship with food *and* emotions, and that they don't have to be tied together so painfully.

— Summer Forlenza, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist in , CA

As a CBT therapist, I explain to the client that their binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make them feel temporarily comforted, would not help them feel better about themselves. In fact, overeating usually has the opposite effect and actually makes them feel worse about themselves. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. We will also work on improving your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC
 

I am a "certified Intuitive Eating Pro", and have trained in Health At Every Size and Mindful Eating approaches to healing.

— Jessica Foley, Licensed Professional Clinical Counselor in Waltham, MA

As a CBT therapist, I explain to the client that their binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make them feel temporarily comforted, would not help them feel better about themselves. In fact, overeating usually has the opposite effect and actually makes them feel worse about themselves. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. We will also work on improving your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC
 

As a CBT therapist, I explain to the client that their binge eating is based on emotional reasoning, and, although eating might make them feel temporarily comforted, would not help them feel better about themselves. In fact, overeating usually has the opposite effect and actually makes them feel worse about themselves. Together, you and I will plan a different approach to handling disappointment. With practice, you will be able to interpret people’s responses more realistically, so you are not constantly feeling inadequate. We will also work on improving your self-esteem. As your self-esteem improves, you became more able to refrain from snacking and binging and began to eat more nutritious food.

— Amy Castongia, Counselor in Huntersville, NC

Who hasn't used ice cream to deal with a break up? What better to come home to after a horrible day at work, than a steamy bowl of mac n cheese? Food should be enjoyed. We celebrate milestones with sweets and we feast at holidays. Throughout history, food and emotions have gone together. And yet there are times, especially in our culture, when managing emotions by eating gets out of hand. If you are thinking about food more often or if you want to find other ways of managing stress, let's talk.

— Kathryn Gates, Marriage & Family Therapist in Austin, TX
 

Often times if we struggle with managing our weight, we also struggle with feelings of depression, anxiety, or lower self-esteem. We often use food as a way to cope and deal with emotions that we struggle with, and we can also essentially become addicted to foods. One common method that I frequently use to help heal a relationship with food is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (or CBT). This technique has a great deal of evidence behind it as being effective in healing our relationship with food.

— Danielle Wayne, Licensed Clinical Social Worker in Boise, ID