Nutritional Treatments for Emotional Overeating

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It may seem ironic to turn to nutritional treatments for emotional overeating – after all, isn’t the problem too much eating? Why would you want to look at more foods you need to eat? But more and more experts are seeing the connection between nutrition and emotional overeating.

The fact is, when you overeat in response to emotions, you may not be eating the healthiest foods. You become full – even sick – on junk foods, and there’s no room left for the good stuff. It’s common knowledge that you do need the right nutrients to be healthy, and if those foods are not being eaten, then it’s more a matter of quality than quantity.

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Nutritional Deficiencies

Another aspect of emotional overeating may be nutritional deficiencies – and the deficiencies might bring on cravings. The theory is that the body craves certain foods in response to a need – in the case of emotional overeating, the need is emotional but it may also be physical. For example, a craving for ice cream may signify your body’s need for calcium.

Here are some vitamins and minerals that, according to research, are implicated in the management of emotional overeating.

Vitamin D

This vitamin’s effect on mood is well-documented, and is even suggested for people who suffer from certain depressive disorders, such as Seasonal Affective Disorder. Foods high in Vitamin D include:

  • Cod liver oil
  • Sockeye salmon
  • Soymilk (fortified with Vitamin D)
  • Cow’s milk

Remember that Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, so sources with healthy fats, such as fish, may be absorbed better by the body.

 B-complex Vitamins

These important vitamins help increase energy levels and manage water retention. Foods with B vitamins include:

  • Yogurt
  • Eggs
  • Lean beef (B12)
  • Dark leafy greens (kale, broccoli, spinach)

Magnesium and Calcium

This is a powerful pair – many supplements put them together in one pill or capsule. These minerals are important for managing muscle and nerve tension. Interestingly, when these minerals occur naturally in foods, there is usually a higher proportion of magnesium to calcium, whereas supplements generally have more calcium than magnesium. Foods include:

  • Beans
  • Nuts, especially peanuts, hazelnuts, and pecans
  • Corn

Zinc

Zinc has been shown to have a profound effect on appetite and cravings, and many people with eating disorders are deficient in this mineral. Zinc is found in the following foods:

  • Shellfish, especially oysters and crab
  • Beef, particularly beef shanks
  • Pork
  • Chicken
  • Garbanzo beans

Making deliberate, conscious choices about what you do eat can go a long way toward managing emotional overeating. Plan your meals and make a shopping list, and be proactive about meeting your nutritional needs.

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Dieting To Gain Weight

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Being underweight poses several problems to health. In a world where being fashionable is synonymous to being thin the danger of malnutrition, physical defects, a weakened immune system, mental disease and other diseases that could lead to death is very real. The only recourse to get the body back to the track of proper nutrition is to gain weight back the earlier the better. Remaining to be underweight could make the person develop repulsion to food that will form complications that will be difficult to treat later on.

Aside from the usual problems that accompanies malnourishment, physical activities let alone exercises to tone the muscles will never take place. Now there are only a few major pathways to good health. Two of these are proper nutrition and exercise. When that is not done, other complications follow.

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In general though, malnourishment is not the only cause for being underweight. A person could be skinny but remain very healthy but if genes are not the cause, the following may be reason for you to have a check with your doctor so that a program to gain weight or a program of treatment is done.

Malfunctioning digestive organs- There are several causes for this that should be consulted with a physician. Upfront, the following will help.

Fruits and Vegetables – Fruits and vegetables contain digestive enzymes that aid digestion and the absorption of nutrients. Aside from that, this food group contains fiber that cleans the digestive tract down to the colon. Choose fruits and vegetables with very high fiber content. When the digestive system is clean, many illnesses in the body are prevented. When fruits and vegetables are not enough, there are drinks and concoctions that offer fiber to reinforce that which is lacking. Drink vegetable juices where fiber is generally higher. If you cannot do that yet freshly squeezed fruit juices are a good way to start.

Yogurt – Contains good bacteria that help digestion. When there is more harmful than good bacteria in the digestive tract, health problems occur.

Aloe Vera – Eat food preparations that have Aloe Vera. This plant helps soften stool and facilitates easier flushing of the junk in the system.

Water – Drink plenty of it.

Anorexia Nervosa – This is a psychiatric illness that needs immediate attention. Anorexia nervosa is voluntary starvation caused mainly because there is a fear to gain weight.

Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome – Although rare, this gastrointestinal disorder is life threatening. This is characterized by compression of the duodenum in the digestive tract.

Depressive disorders and anxiety – While psychological in nature and treatment, the disorder are basically caused by thoughts that are negative in nature that influences moods and behavior but leads to more serious health problems. Check with your physician.

Other causes of lack of appetite are tuberculosis, cancer treatment, type 1 diabetes, drug use and the use of stimulants and inflammatory bowel diseases to name a few. The treatment varies and the difficulty of treatment varies. No matter, affliction is the more reason to find ways at gaining weight through proper dieting and nutrition.

Usually though, if the main reason for being underweight is not caused by poverty, the reason is self induced and voluntary. Both are sad while the latter has the latitude of choice. Choose health. Gain weight. Get the proper diet.

 

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