Emotional Eating is the association with food and emotions. They can be pleasant or unpleasant. The quantity of food consumed can be small or large.

Binge eating is related with a large quantity of emotional eating-akin to stuffing one's face-finishing the whole bag of potato chips or the quart of ice cream. Binge eating is also usually connected with a non nutritious source of food.

However, most people do not understand that their eating is emotionally based. They just think that they have an eating problem. Or they have come to accept that they are genetically predisposed to overeating. Thus overeating is just some vague problem.

Of course they know the answer to the problem is to cut down on the quantity of food they consume. But, the only approach they know is to look in the direction of diets for a diet does cut down on the quantity of food.

And of course there are so many different diets-all aimed at a different theory to reduce hunger and make dieting palatable.

There are two basic mistakes with dieting that leads eventually to the binge that ends the diet. The first mistake is that dieting is associated with a scarcity mind set. The individual is constantly thinking about what he/she can't eat, must give up, or do without. This mind set contributes to anxiety which feeds an emotional rollercoaster for which they are unprepared.

The second mistake is that diets only focus on awareness of food. Not that awareness is bad, in fact awareness is good. However, awareness is only a viable technique for handling habitual eating-eating out of habit and never addresses the issue of emotional eating. And because we have so little training in effective techniques to handle emotions, one is totally incapable of handling the emotional component of say “feeling bad about one's self.”

Inevitably one fighting the battle of the bulge will have occasion to feel badly about oneself-it's simply common nature that something will happen where he/she will not live up to expectations and bang-there's a feeling of rejection, upset, remorse, disappointment… Being ill equipped to handle these most basic of feelings leads one to eat something-usually something sweet. This only compounds a self loathing feeling which leads to eating more of sweet and the pay off with the compound interest of a self hatred binge. Every bite is, “It tastes so good but I must stop.” And ends up with, “what the hell, I'll eat the whole damn package.”

It's a cover up of the base emotion of disappointment, rejection, upset, remorse… and until one learns the basics of handling emotional eating, one stays stuck in the cycle of dieting and binging.

An effective approach to conquer emotional eating involves asking important questions "What is missing here? Why are you not getting the results you've been promised?" It is clearly insane to keep dieting when the results are so poor. It's more important to gain a grasp on how to stop emotional eating--eating emotional stress than it is to read the scale. Besides focusing on the scale doesn't empower you to be a better more enlightened person, whereas learning how to overcome emotional eating empowers you in all aspects of your life. If you're a sales person, you'll be a better sales person. If you're an assembly line worker, you'll be a better assembly line worker; a mother, a better mother... Overall, you'll build self worth and find that what you really want to eat is far more nutritious and less in quantity than you ever before imagined possible.

Author's Bio: 

Richard Kuhns B.S.Ch.E., NGH certified, a prominent figure in the field of hypnosis with his best selling hypnosis and stress management cds at www.DStressDoc.com and www.PanicBusters.com. His aim is to make it possible for anyone to manage emotional binge eating. For more information please visit www.dstressdoc.com/BingeEatingEbook.htm