Don’t pull that trigger!

March 11, 2010 at 4:19 pm Leave a comment

OMG-potato chips dipped in chocolate? Holla!

Ah, trigger foods. We all have them. Our preferences usually  fall into two groups: salty and sweet. In times of high stress, you’ll most likely go for one or the other. Like the age old debate of chocolate vs. vanilla, you’re either sweet or salty. Chocolate bar vs. oil & vinegar potato chips? What do you reach for?

Me, I’m a sweets girl. Always have been, probably always will be. But the thing is, I’ve started to ALSO incorporate the salty…crackers with hummus, salty potato chips. So now I’m playing for both teams.

I’m bringing this up because I’ve been pretty stressed out the past 2-3 weeks. Starting with my Chemistry exam (which I aced, thank you very much) and ending today (my Diet Assessment midterm), I’ve been a little, how do you call it?..tense.

If you’ve read my blog, you’ll know that I’m an emotional eater (and binge eater, but no binges as of late). When I get stressed, I turn to food to comfort me. Some people drink alcohol, others run 6 miles, and other smoke cigarettes. Me, I eat.

I used to be OK with just dark chocolate. And then the chips and hummus snuck in.

I found I was eating all of them pretty uncontrollably, especially when I wasn’t hungry. I’d use food as a procrastination tool–after all, if I was eating, then I couldn’t be doing work. Staring at the bottom of a hummus container equally comforted me and made me feel like crap at the same time.

So, a wise woman (my mother) told me: “You’re setting yourself up for failure. You need to remove the triggers.” Light bulb moment!

So this past weekend I did. I dumped the chocolate, the hummus, the chips. Why is this OK for me? I’m not saying that I can never have chocolate, chips and hummus ever again, or that I’m “bad” for eating too much of it. It’s OK because I know if at any time I want chocolate (or whatever), I give myself permission to go out and get it (I do live near like 5 amazing bakeries). But in the house–nuh uh, not now.

And you know, it’s worked. I find myself turning to food less, because, let’s face it, it’s difficult to drown your sorrows in a pile of carrot sticks. 

My question: If you know you have trigger foods, how you can you set yourself up for success around them?

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