The motivation to eat is complicated. It is based in your past, present and even future. Your past memories and the feelings associated with those memories play a role which impacts the way in which you currently respond to sights, smells, colours and textures of food. Also, what we think about food, which has implications for what we are going to do to respond to our food intake in the future. Our current body state such as hormones, also plays a large role in what and how much you want to eat.
Emotional triggers are a huge driving force. If you don't have these emotional cues figured out then you will be vulnerable to their impact. As they say, 'Eat before you go grocery shopping'. The sights, sounds and smells of food, cues us into wanting to eat. This can be from a picture, a TV commercial, your imagination, or seeing somebody with a food item in their hand. After eating, these food cues loose much of their impact on our emotional state, because the emptiness has been filled for the moment.
The sound of your tummy going off can also be a food cue. We have a tendency to say "Oh, your hungry" the statement of which becomes yet another food cue. When we are deficient in any way, such as thirsty or we haven't been eating the nutrients that we need, another food cue kicks in, internally. The brain says to fill in the gap, but unfortunately sometimes these food cues become confused, and instead of drinking something we try to obtain what we need from an intake of food. The body can't sometimes figure out what we are lacking nutritionally so instead of going for the obvious choice of broccoli, or meat, we aim for the easy choice of food, high in fat, sugar and salt.
The goal is not to suppress the cravings or ignore them, it is to figure out what they are indicators of. It is not about restricting food groups or calories that leads to weight loss. Generally speaking if you are trying to 'white knuckle it' and not eat certain things even though you have longings for them, then what will eventually happen is the binge. It is instead about recognizing that your body has been triggered by a food cue and then figuring out what that is about for you. Then you have to determine is that what you are really needing? Are you truly hungry or have you just experienced a food cue?
When you identify the food cue, then you get to figure out if that craving is what you are really needing right now or not. Perhaps it is a drink of water, or it is the need to eat something and then you get to chose from your healthy regimen. The food is never off limits, it is just asking the question "Is now is the time?" If it is, then go for it. If it isn't, then you can easily take a pass, because you recognize that all you have come across is a food cue.
On the quest to lose 50 pounds in a year. Can she do it? Only time will tell....with the help of this blog.