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Weight Loss and Control:
Roger Gould, MD's Weekly Blog
on Emotional Eating


 
Knowledge is power.
Understanding why you turn to food is the key to changing it. Join in the discussion each week as Dr. Gould shares his valuable insights from over 30-years of clinical experience.

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The Deep Roots of Emotional Eating

MONDAY, APRIL 30, 2007 | POSTED BY MICHELLE

The reason our program is 12 weeks long and the Shrink Yourself book is 273 pages is because emotional eating is not quite as simple as figuring out that you eat to feel better, or you eat to avoid feeling bad. Yes, noticing those patterns is an essential part of changing them, but it's not the only thing. One member commented that those things feel obvious, and for some people they are. But in the deeper part of the program (the last four weeks) and the deeper parts of the book (the Safety, Rebellion and Emptiness Layers), you start to see how deeply rooted and complex emotional eating patterns can be. They can be so deeply rooted that many people sabotage their dieting success. Somewhere in their mind, they actually believe that it's better to be fat. It's this deeper part, the part that is resistant to change, that we'll help you find.


It took me time to find my hunger switch, the things that made me want to eat. For example, last week under a work deadline I ate four cookies while working at my desk. In the moment, I remembered being an art major in High School and needing a one-pound bag of M&M's to get me through long nights at my drafting table. I felt lonely and overwhelmed in the basement of my house. I've learned not to eat after seven o'clock, so eating cookies at midnight was strange for me, but there must've been some of the old feelings of loneliness and overwhelm lingering in me. Tonight, when I needed to work, yet again the cookies tempted me. This time, I said, "No." I found that I survived. I still feel a bit lonely and overwhelmed but at least I don't have the guilt of eating the wrong food to contend with. I know that food can't fill the emptiness I had as a kid, and it can't fill the emptiness I sometimes still feel today.

It may take you time to find your hunger switch, too. Please be patient with yourself.


 
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Best Comment of the Week

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 25, 2007 | POSTED BY MICHELLE

I just wanted to post a comment but I did not know where to go. I just wanted to say that your site and the work I have done thru you is one of the best things that ever happened to me. I was finally able to break through some logstanding issues and some I did not even know where there! I am very grateful for your program and I recommend it to everyone I know. Thank You.


 
April is Emotional Overeating Awareness Month

TUESDAY, APRIL 24, 2007 | POSTED BY MICHELLE

April is Emotional Overeating Awareness Month. In the next week, you might want to ask yourselves as you're about to eat, is my stomach hungry, do I need food right now or am I hungry for something else?

Are you hungry for love, fulfillment, stimulation, friendship, success?

If you answer "yes" to any of those questions, my challenge to you just for this week is to take one small action towards having the things you really want instead of eating. It could be doing your overdue taxes, reconnecting with an old friend, cleaning out the garage, taking a bath, joining a book club or anything you are hungry for.

If you take this challenge, please report on your experiences by hitting comments below.



 
Good Housekeeping Article Recognizes Emotional Eating

FRIDAY, APRIL 6, 2007 | POSTED BY MICHELLE

In the April, 2007 issue of Good Housekeeping, Caroline Bollinger wrote about Slim Down Secrets. It's an article that profiles how six or seven different women finally lost the weight they wanted (they each had about 100 lbs. to lose each)

Each one reached a place where she came to see the way she was using food to feel better. Here are some of the things the women said, "I often ate to fill an emptiness inside;" "I was miserable and to dull the pain, I'd eat;" "my worst habit was snacking when I was stressed, bored, or wanted a reward for doing something well;" and "food became my medication."

These are all descriptions of Emotional Eating. Each of the women above had to deal with those issues before she could commit to a sensible eating plan, and finally lose the weight she wanted.

One woman said, "there was always the knowledge that my life was meant to be more."

I know I felt this way when I was carrying extra weight. Ironically, extra weight included extra emotional baggage. What are the ways that you know your life is meant to be more?
I invite you to search, to dream, and to share your comments on this board.

In the June issue of Good Housekeeping, Dr. Gould will be talking more about Emotional Eating and the Shrink Yourself method.



 
You're Not Alone in Your Efforts to Lose Weight

WEDNESDAY, APRIL 4, 2007 | POSTED BY MICHELLE

Hi, my name is Michelle Fiordaliso. I am the Clinical Director of the Shrink Yourself Mastering Food Program. I am a psychotherapist and certified nutritional counselor.

At the risk of sounding like that old Hair Club for Men commercial, I don't just work at this company but I have had my own struggles with weight beginning when I was nine-years old. As a child I had a dream of being an actor. When I was nine, I met an agent who wanted to sign me. He suggested that I lose ten pounds. The very next day, I tried not to eat anything, until four o'clock when I found I was starving, and gave in and ate two Oreo cookies with a friend. Then there was the freshman fifteen, a thirty-pound weight gain when I had thyroid problems, and an eighty-pound weight gain when I was pregnant with my son. I called myself, "The Human Accordion," swelling and shrinking from time to time. Finally, I reached a place where I was so fed-up with a body that was constantly changing. I'm sure you're familiar with that place. I knew I had to do something different than diet and exercise. I had to change my relationship to food. Once I did this, following a sensible diet and exercise plan became much easier. Of course, I still worry about my weight, who doesn't, but it's an occasional thought not an every day, every meal obsession.

I am here to present you with links to the most up-to-date articles about Emotional Eating, to answer your questions, and to remind you that you are not alone in this journey to recover your power over food. I can promise you the place to start is by going inside and asking yourself certain questions. If I could wave a magic wand and take away this painful vicious cycle, I would. But we both know I can't. But what I can do, is share how I used the Shrink Yourself methods to put an end to this pattern, and help you find the plan that will work best for you.