How is impulse eating related to weight gain?

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Judy Caplan
Nutrition & Dietetics
Impulse eating is definitely related to weight gain. If you are eating mindlessly you are probably taking in too many calories. Even a few extra calories taken in on a regular basis cause weight gain. Impulse eating can be controlled by applying awareness techniques. Writing in a food journal, keeping tract of your exercise days, planning meals, and removing tempting foods from your home or office all play a role in controlling unintended eating. Keep heathy snacks handy and always ask yourself before you eat if you are really hungry.
Marjorie Nolan Cohn
Nutrition & Dietetics

Impulse eating is outside of hunger, and form of emotional eating. In some cases impulse eating can turn into an eating disorder called binge eating. When anyone eats outside of hunger on a regular basis it can cause weight gain.

Ruth Frechman
Nutrition & Dietetics

Our eyes are bigger than our stomachs. If you walk by a cupcake store, you may be tempted to go in and buy, not just one, but two or three different cupcakes to try. The smell of the bakery may have twisted your arm to walk into the store. If you hadn't planned on buying cupcakes, you would not have eaten them and would not have consumed an extra 325 calories per cupcake. This type of behavior over time can lead to excess weight.

Jessica Crandall
Nutrition & Dietetics

Food related impulses can cause you to gain weight as you are less likely to pay attention to what your body needs and pay less attention to your satiety (fullness). As many of us know when extra calories are consumed on a consistent basis they add up and cause weight gain. Some tips that might help you to stay on track with your weight loss goal when presented with an impulse is to remind yourself of why you are trying to lose weight, I also encourage my clients to talk with their support system so that they can be encouraged to stay on track, or try to find a substitution that might satisfy your craving that is a healthier option lastly if you decide to consume the food try to be more mindful of the portion and use portion control when consuming the food item.

Jamie McGinn
Nutrition & Dietetics

Impulses occur without the time to realize or care what you are eating and how it impacts the rest of your day, week, etc. Impulse eating makes it so you eat whatever you can, and a lot of it because you're so hungry! Planning ahead is the best way to prevent this from happening. Preparing your lunch the night before will be an easy way to make sure you don't splurge at work. Keep lots of bottled water, granola bars, dried fruit, nuts, and whole grain crackers in your car to keep you from stopping at the fast food restaurant or gas station. Plan, Plan, Plan - and any way that you can - write it down, buy the food at the grocery store, etc.

Continue Learning about Psychology of Weight Loss

Psychology of Weight Loss

Psychology of Weight Loss

There are good days and bad days on the journey to a healthy weight, and your state of mind has a great deal to do with how you weather the weight loss storm. Be kind to yourself through the inevitable struggles and employ positiv...

ve self-talk to help you get up and get moving. Also, make awareness a priority, not just of the fat and calorie content of the food you're eating but also when and how much you eat. Make the cycle a positive one and remember, "success fuels motivation; motivation fuels success."
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.