SSM Health Medical Minute – What is emotional eating and how can you help it?

Medical Minute

ST. LOUIS – Exercise and eating right have traditionally been the most suggested ways to lose or maintain a healthy weight. But occasionally, something else may be going on in your body. SSM Health Weight Management Therapist Stephanie Najbart says emotional eating can lead to weight gain. Figuring out the right way to manage your weight is not always as easy as exercise and eating right. 

Najbart says SSM Health Weight Management programs offer a full range of weight-loss strategies to help you regain your health and identify the root cause of maintaining a healthy weight. Emotional eating can be caused by anything from work stress to financial worries to relationship struggles. 

Najbart says emotional eating is more common with women than with men. People who emotionally eat reach for food several times a week or more to suppress and soothe negative feelings. They may even feel guilt or shame after eating this way, leading to a cycle of issues, including weight gain.

Negative emotions can lead to an emotional void and food becomes the way to fill that void and create a false feeling of fullness or temporary wholeness. 

If you find yourself retreating from social support, not wanting to engage in activities that may relieve stress, or confused by the difference between physical and emotional hunger or just finding yourself craving food in response to stress, you may be an emotional eater.

SSM Health Weight Management offers dedicated programs to personalize your weight loss journey.  A variety of non-surgical treatments are available such as working with dieticians and behavioral health therapists to make long-term lifestyle changes or small habit adjustments to support you on your path to wellness.

Depending on your goals, you may benefit from a nutrition and wellness program, weight loss medications, or support groups. Registered dieticians can give you support and guidance by tailoring healthy eating plans to your individual goals specific to your needs as well including weight loss, diabetic diets, cholesterol/fat restrictions, gluten-free diets, lactose-free diets, sports nutrition, and so much more.

To learn more about your SSM Health Weight Management options, click here

The SSM Health Medical Minute airs Wednesdays on News 11 at 7pm and FOX 2 News at 9pm.

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Medical Minute


Healthcare information, educational topics, and cutting-edge health news happening locally. Sponsored by SSM Health

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