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Why You’re Overeating: Emotional Eating

It’s easy to get pulled off track from your weight loss efforts, especially when feelings get involved.

Below I’ll highlight some of the common emotional eating pitfalls, and what you can do about them today.

Let’s give you another tool in the toolbox and a heightened awareness of your own behaviours.


There are a handful of reasons you and I might sit down to eat a meal. 

When we taste the food, it gives us a pleasant sensation and we get some bells ringing in the happiness centre in our brains. These bells ring louder on certain occasions.

If we are eating chocolate cake, for example. Maybe we’re surrounded by family and friends, seated at a bountiful table fit for a king. It could be the taste of an ice-cold beer after a long day of physical work in the sun.  

These are all wonderful and normal things to look forward to. Sitting down to a proper meal that you’re ready to enjoy is one of life’s finest excitements. 

Can you think of a time in your life where you could’ve used a bit more of that lovely, warm and fuzzy feeling? 

Here are a few things that might give you the urge to “ring those bells”. 


Boredom and Procrastination

It’s not that there are any negative emotions or feelings going on, you might just rather fill these moments with pleasure. 

In times when we know we have work to do or studying to be done – it’s easier (and maybe more fun) to go grab something crunchy, salty, sweet, or savoury.

Would you pick trigonometry over tiramisu?


Stress, Sadness, and Anxiety 

Imagine that you’re a monkey and all you want is to secure food, shelter, and warmth.

That wasn’t so hard, was it? 

Now imagine a black, thunderous cloud rolling in. 

Many sets of reflective eyes prowl by your cave at night. 

These types of stressors would set off warning signals in a monkey’s brain. Those signals are similar to the ones we humans get when we’re stressed by things like work, finances, and the traffic downtown.

To many people, food can seem like a cheap, harmless, and simple “quick-fix” for these types of feelings.


Moving Forward 

Reading this article is a huge step in the right direction, if this is something that you’re struggling with. 

If you’re in the dark about emotional eating, you might not know why you just ate a half jar of peanut butter while sitting on the couch on a Thursday night.

It might be a mystery to some people why they can’t seem to keep the weight off when work gets crazy, or they’re in the midst of a global pandemic…

Here is the simplest, two-step process that can help you break the cycle.


Step Number 1 – Build Awareness.

Awareness of emotional eating. 

Notice it, and name it. No need to hate on it, or shame yourself – everybody does it.

You’re doing the right thing by bringing attention to it. 

You might even try digging a little deeper.

Who are you with when it happens? How are you feeling?

Step Number 2  Build Outlets. 



Eat when you’re stressed? How else could you deal with those feelings? 

Eat when you’re bored? How else could you deal with those feelings?

This step is every bit as challenging as it is exciting. I encourage you to get creative with this one.


Hey! I'm Matteo Marra

Owner/Head Coach at Marra Strength. 

I believe “getting in shape” is really just a set of skills that can be learned and utilized to upgrade your life. 

Using this concept, i’ve helped hundreds of busy guys look and feel amazing shirtless by teaching them how to master the skills of dieting for fat loss and training for muscle growth.

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