Tips to avoid emotional eating this holiday season

Posted: Updated:

PHOENIX -- With the all the focus on food and entertaining, the holiday season can be a dangerous time when it comes to emotional eating.

"At Remuda Ranch, this is a time in our eating and anxiety program that we do see an exacerbation of stress around the holidays," explained Dr. Dena Cabrera. "People are spending too much, doing too much and eating too much.

"Somebody who is an emotional eater in the first place might use food to sooth themselves, to deal with their problems.

Particularly during the holidays when we're having all these demands and the abundance of food, it might be something that they turn to."

Emotional eating is not uncommon.

"All of us to some degree will eat emotionally," Cabrera said.

Emotional eating becomes a problem is when it disrupts or causes dysfunction everyday life. When somebody starts eating in secret or when eating becomes shameful, that's when it's time to get help.

Cabrera said one strategy to deal with emotional eating is to accept that you cannot do everything and learn to prioritize.

Planning ahead is also key, as is keeping a healthful, balanced routine.

Remuda Ranch Programs for Eating and Anxiety Disorders provides inpatient and residential treatment to women and girls.

Since 1990, the team at Remuda Ranch has treated more than 10,000 patients at our programs in Arizona and Virginia. All patients receive an individualized treatment plan implemented by a team of eating or anxiety disorder professionals. This team includes a psychiatric specialist, a primary care physician, a registered dietitian, a licensed master's or doctoral-level therapist, a psychologist, and registered nurses.

In addition to their intensive programs, Remuda Ranch offers a 30-day residential program for emotional eating. Located in Chandler, Arizona and Bowling Green, Virginia, this program treats women and girls struggling with obesity, compulsive overeating and binge eating disorder.

>> Learn more about Remuda Ranch