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Covering up emotions with food

Joanna Chodorowska

Last month I read Doreen virtues book, Constant Cravings.  It was a fascinating read.  Really it was.  I immediately jumped to the reasons why I may be using food to cover my emotions rather than what she suggests - love.  Using food to cover up emotions is much easier than working on healing the fears or anxiety we may have.  The emotions all need love.  But food is so much easier to use than self reflection.  Or asking for needs to be met.

I have a new client, who wanted some advice on what to buy at the grocery store.  They are just starting on a wheat free plan, and also a new healthier eating plan.  So I asked - "what do you normally eat?  Then I can suggest alternatives."  They admitted to being embarrassed to tell me, and said they were in a bad emotional state for past however many months or years, so would have a hoagie.  Many times in a day.  But now there were ready for a fresh start.
There is an emotional connection to food cravings!
This reminded me of the quote in Doreen's book:

" Fill yourself with love, and the negative emotions have no place to live ."

"... you can pour one of two things on your gut feelings: food or love . Pouring food on your gut is easy ; we all know how to do that.
Pouring love on your gut requires some patience and practice , but is so worth it..."

For me (not my client yet - that is down a bit) I quickly jumped to the section about chocolate cravings .  I find that when I am bored, I eat chocolate.  When I am depressed, I eat chocolate.  When I am happy, I eat chocolate.

In the book, it says the 'probable meaning' is I am 'upset that some part of my love life is unsettled or unacceptable".   When I first read this, I know I was without a love life!  And I was also not loving my life fully. I was not in love with my life.  I loved certain parts of it.  But I used chocolate as my comfort.  Yes, I ate chocolate...a lot!  Dark chocolate covered raisins, dark chocolate squares, dark chocolate name the dark chocolate and it was my best friend!  It would give me the excitement I was needing in a love-less life.  It gave me joy when I ate it!  But I needed to find my joy elsewhere, too.

In another section of the book it mentioned chocolate cravings also being related to lack of joy .  That applied to me, too.  But you read that in the past few posts I wrote, Finding Joy and Listening To Your Heart .  And that is what I tried to work on - finding joy in cooking, eating, socializing, training, doing things outside the box of my comfort zone that seemed fun!  Using The Path To Heal to help release the subconscious blocks I had to creating my fun and joy.  I used chocolate often as a distraction, too!  The sessions really did work , as did finding my joy.  And finding my life partner who is so loving, that I know now that my hug deficit will soon be on the opposite side of the spectrum quickly.  He has helped to find that love and joy I was missing, and using chocolate to cover up my emotions.  My chocolate cravings have definitely subsided.  And I do still enjoy my chocolate - I just don't eat it constantly anymore.

There is also a section on cravings for bread .  And depending on whether it is ... cheese onions lettuce ham and cheese hoagie with lettuce and onions toasted or not, and what you eat the bread with.  So a hoagie falls into the category of soft bread with meat, fowl, fish or lox.  The 'probable meaning' is ' Drained and desiring recharged batteries and emotional support .".  This actually makes complete sense based on client's background.  Now that they are getting some of that emotional support in a new relationship, the desire to eat hoagies is not there, and the desire to eat healthier is!  Which is why they called me from the parking lot of the grocery store! (some clients cannot wait til their session!)

Here is what they actually purchased which is pretty impressive (for a hoagie new snacks junkie)!  They also went to a luncheon where they 'didn't eat too bad'.   They ate collard greens, hard boiled egg, potato salad (instead of wheat bread), fish and some meatballs.  I will have to wait til I talk to them again to find out if they felt better as a result eating this way vs. the hoagie filled way.  I can assume they will feel infinitely better.  But you know what happens when you assume!

If you are struggling with food cravings, look inside for some answers. Schedule a Path To Heal session to help speed up the process so you don't have to keep suffering with the emotional struggle.  You do not need to pour food over your emotional issues, just love.  And helping you find the joy and love you seek, the emotional support, energy, etc from yourself, life and relationships is just one of the tools I have to help you gain control over your eating patterns.  It is not always just straight nutrition coaching I do, but supporting and clearing the blocks with emotional coaching, too!  You can stop covering up your emotions with food.


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