Comfort eating is a sign of stress, anxiety or depression. Comfort eating has less to do with dietary discipline and more to do with the individual’s habitual emotional state and frame of mind. If you suffer from comfort eating then learning to manage your stress, anxiety or depression is your first priority. Trying to start and sustain a diet or exercise regime for the purpose of losing weight, without first attending to the causes of comfort eating, will put you on the fast track to self-sabotage.
Every person is an individual. Their problems are unique, and so are their coping mechanisms. Therefore, it is not possible to find the final solution to the problem of comfort eating in a self-help book, or through a life coach who has no training in emotional eating disorders, or through a diet or exercise regime alone. It is pointless to adjust your diet or exercise habits without seeking professional help for what is essentially an emotional or mental health problem. The physical change in diet or exercise cannot be sustained because the emotional or mental cause has been ignored. This is one reason why diets for comfort eaters do not work and their gym memberships turn into a waste of money. The unsuccessful dieter is left with feelings of guilt, embarrassment or shame that squeezes the life out of their confidence. Self-doubt and humiliation impede further weight loss attempts. It becomes a very disheartening cycle of short lived success followed by longer and longer bouts of failure.
Comfort eating is obsessive behaviour. Counsellors, psychologists and psychiatrists are trained to treat obsessive behaviour, while personal fitness trainers, self-help books and many diet experts are not. They are trained to treat your physical health, although each one can offer much support to complement your emotional and mental health improvements.
A starving soul turns to comfort eating for sustenance. When you treat the physical, emotional and mental aspects of any problem with equal regard, your spirit responds accordingly, and so the hunger in your soul is satisfied.