A Stress Eater’s Guide to Health

My name is Vanessa, and I am a stress eater.

photoIt’s CRAZY how without even thinking I will start searching for some chocolate after a stressful day! Or ask Fernando to pick up a bottle of wine on his way home.

One of the things that being mindful of my diet has done, is shown me just how MUCH I was relying on food to distract me, or make me feel better. It has forced me to deal with stressful situations, instead of escaping to food – which has been good (although, not always easy).

HOWEVER there is nothing wrong with a little bit of ice cream, wine or something warm and sweet after a long day, let’s face it, a Kale salad just doesn’t scream “comfort”.

Making small changes in your comfort food can make a HUGE difference when done consistently over time.
Here are some of my favorite swaps!

Ice Cream -to- Banana Ice Cream
I LOVE banana ice cream! You can add frozen strawberries and lemon juice and make it fruity and tart or peanut butter and vanilla extract for something sweet and creamy. You can even scoop some unsweetened cocoa powder for a chocolate fix, or some coffee and have it for breakfast. photo

Microwave Popcorn -to- Brown Bag Popcorn
This is essentially the same thing, only when you make your own popcorn from kernels in a brown paper bag you don’t have all the chemicals and artificial junk. You are in control of what you put on it – just sea salt, a little butter or coconut oil. The possibilities are endless and the taste – WAY BETTER.

Apple Pie -to- Warm Baked Apples
A cold crunchy apple may not scream comfort, but a warm, gooey, spiced one certainly does! I add coconut oil, cinnamon and a tiny bit of organic coconut sugar to my sliced apples and stick them in the microwave. Adding chopped pecans on top gives a GREAT textural crunch!

Chocolate -to- Chocolate
Ok, there’s no substitution for chocolate, but you can be smart about what KIND of chocolate you have. obviously Dark is best – but you have to really watch your portions (at least, I do!) one piece turns to six all too quickly. My recommendation is don’t have a chocolate ‘stash’ but ONLY buy one piece or bar for a special occasion. If you have a steady supply, you will have some EVERY NIGHT. And, of course, I would be remiss not to mention Shakeology. The Chocolate and Vegan Chocolate flavors are just…there are no words! Get’s me over that craving every time.

Eating -to- Working out
So, this is a little different, but how about when you feel stressed, or emotional or just frustrated, you workout, or take a walk or a jog or just do a few jumping jacks? It’s amazing how much BETTER I feel emotionally after I’ve worked out. Next time you are scurrying around the kitchen, mindlessly opening the refrigerator, take a moment and even if it’s the LAST thing you want to do, just be active for 5 minutes (I bet you’ll want to keep going after that!).

I hope these tips are helpful! I know that they have worked for me and I feel a million times better equipped to deal with my emotional cravings than before!

If you are interested in taking 21 Days to really focus on your nutrition and fitness with an accountability group and coach – contact me! I run complimentary challenge groups on facebook every month, I’d love to help conquer your cravings once and for all!Photo on 9-12-14 at 4.10 PM

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