Anna Wootton

It Is About How and Why You Eat…But What You Eat Matters, Too

I spend a lot of time with my coaching clients talking about why we eat, how we eat, what’s going on when we’re eating.

This is important – no, it’s necessary – when looking into emotional eating habits and how to change them. But sometimes it can get confusing, and I have been asked on occasion: “So, if I just want to eat doughnuts and pizza for the rest of my days, I can, right?”

Here’s the thing: you can eat whatever you want – of course you can. You’re an adult, and rules are boring, so let’s drop them! But when you stop listening to your head about eating and instead listen to your body, you will find, eventually, that you don’t want pizza and doughnuts for the rest of your days.

And while you’re trying to get to that place, you can make life easier for yourself. It’s important to move away from a place of restriction and labelling foods as ‘bad’, because that inner rebel in all of us perfectionist, well-behaved emotional eaters will fight to come out and have what it’s not allowed. So let’s eradicate labels. Instead, let’s think about these foods on a cellular level. Let’s try and focus just on biology, for just one second.

We make life a lot harder on ourselves if we choose to fuel ourselves on a diet of caffeine, sugar and salt. These are all addictive and can cause a cycle of craving that means it’s hard to get out of the habit of caffeine, sugar, salt, rinse and repeat. So it’s obviously a lot easier to feel energized and healthy on a diet of greens, whole grains and healthy fats. Everyone wants a treat from time to time, though, right?

One concept I teach my clients is about being a Sweet Snob. If sweets are your thing, then enjoy and savour them but go for the best. And the best may mean the prettiest decorated pastry from that expensive cafe downtown, but I encourage you to think outside the box when it comes to what quality means to you. For me, I love raw desserts. They can be expensive because they use more costly ingredients and dense quantities of them. But I love going to a raw cafe, ordering a delicious and beautiful slice of raw cake (the cake pictured above is raw!) or macaroon, and knowing that the item was made with love, with high-quality ingredients, and with foods that I know how to pronounce and am happy to put into my body.

Ready to make one at home? Check out this raw treat of mine…my Chocolate Avocado Smoothie-Pudding.

Some Fun Work for You to Consider…

  • What is your definition of good-quality food?
  • Do you battle with breaking the cravings cycle from time to time?
  • Is it hard for you to separate the emotional from the physical?