It can be tempting to reach for a candy bar or a bag of chips when you’re feeling stressed. But stress eating isn’t helpful to your weight loss goals. It may feel good in the moment, but you usually regret it as soon as you’ve eaten. These are some activities you can do instead of stress eating. They can help alleviate your stress and there’s no guilt afterward.
1. Go for a Walk
One activity to choose instead of turning to stress eating is to go for a walk. Walking is a great stress reliever. It’s a type of exercise so it releases all those lovely endorphins that give you a feel good rush. Additionally, walking is an activity that helps to clear your mind. Things often look brighter after a walk.
2. Call a Friend
Sometimes it can be helpful to talk your problems over with a friend. You may even find that you figure out a solution just by talking to someone. If nothing else, venting can help release your frustrations. It always makes me feel better to talk to a friend. They can also offer you a sympathetic ear and even some suggestions for whatever stressful situation you’re dealing with.
3. Have a Glass of Water
This may not help you to feel less stressed, but it’s a way to hit pause. Before you reach for food when you’re tempted to indulge in stress eating, have a glass of water. This gives you a moment to think and decide to do something else instead of eating. Having a glass of water can also help kill the urge to snack. It’s a two-fold solution.
4. Plan Your Menu
If your mind is on food then one option is to go with it. Not in the sense that you give in to stress eating, but you do something food related. It can be pleasurable to plan your menu. You get to think about food without actually turning to it for comfort. This is also a good time to research some new recipes to try.
5. Work out
This is another way to take advantage of those feel good endorphins released by exercise. Put in a good workout. Exercise is a wonderful tool in dealing with stress. It has a helpful side effect too, in that it makes you want to eat healthier. You usually don’t want to put junk into your body when you’re working out. I know that I don’t want all my hard work to go to waste!
Writing about what has you feeling stressed can be very therapeutic. You don’t have to keep a daily journal to do this, although that’s a good thing to do. Simply writing your feelings out on a few pieces of paper can help you to gain perspective. You can also type them out and then delete them when you’re done. It can feel very freeing to release all the stress that’s upsetting you.
7. Form a Plan to Handle the Situation
Sometimes the best way to handle stress is to deal with it, especially if it’s a reoccurring situation. Step back from the situation and look at it from an outside perspective. Brainstorm possible solutions you could use. It may even help to make a list of options you could choose. Seeing things written down in black and white can give you clarity.
These are 7 activities you can choose instead of giving in to stress eating. Have you found some good alternatives to stress eating? I’d love to hear from you!