It’s 9 pm and once again, Jerri has found herself standing in front of the refrigerator, searching for something to satisfy. It’s a pattern she knows all too well. Just about every night, even when she eats a substantial dinner, she starts thinking about food halfway through the evening. And then the night eating starts…and doesn’t stop until she’s asleep. Even though she’s mystified as to why she does this every night, she resolves to not eat after 8 pm.
So what do you think? Will Jerri’s strategy work for her?
It’s questionable because any time we fall into a regular pattern of overeating, the way out is to discover the root. What is the reason for the overeating? Then you can come up with more effective strategies to tackle the problem.
Questions To Ask Yourself About Eating At Night
Is It Physical Hunger?
When it comes to night eating, a primary question to ask yourself is whether you are eating enough during the day. Often that’s the real problem. We’re either caught up in work and ignore hunger until it comes knocking later when we’re relaxed.
Or we are worried about our weight so we cut back calories during the day and end up too hungry at night.
Sometimes it’s even a matter of medications that dull appetite cues, such as those for ADHD. But once the meds wear off, hunger pops up with a vengeance.
Is It Emotional Eating?
A study published earlier this year showed that binge eating is often mislabeled as night eating syndrome (NES). While physical hunger can be at the root of NES for many people, it’s often not the case with emotional eating or binge eating disorder.
Emotional and Binge Eating Intensive Weekend – March 5-8, 2015
Don’t get me wrong. When we regularly overeat due to emotions, it is important that we feed ourselves well, so we don’t get too hungry which can be a set-up for overeating. But that’s only a support strategy. We’re not getting to the root of the problem for many who emotionally overeat on a regular basis.
What’s needed there is to uncover the feelings that are driving the overeating, and develop other ways to manage those feelings without using food.
Help for Binge Eating or Night Eating
These issues are part of our year-round program at Green Mountain at Fox Run. But we’re also offering a Emotional and Binge Eating Intensive weekend, March 5-8, designed to help break the emotional overeating cycle.
These 5 night eating strategies can also help you “in the heat of the moment” when you can’t think of anything else to do but eat. They can be effective in helping you step back to gain awareness of what you are feeling and give you time to make a different choice than eat. When you are more aware, you can make a better choice about what will really help.
Here’s to happy, healthy eating at night!
Do you eat at night? Do you think that you’re a binge eater? Share your experience..