MIDLAND, TX (KWES) - Stress eating is something many struggle with on a daily basis, but with a little self reflection you can easily decrease the amount you may be relying on food in stressful situations.
"What are my connections to food," Ashleigh Partin, clinical dietitian at Midland Memorial Hospital said. "What causes me to stress eat, what causes me to over eat? Keep a journal that may include writing down what you're eating but that also just may include how you're feeling."
Another tool Partin suggests is something she calls the hunger scale of a one to 10.
One being you are at the hungry and irritated and 10, you are so full you feel like you could pop.
"We don't wanna be at either one of those ends and so you wanna stay in between about a three to a six," Partin said. "You wanna get hungry you want your stomach to growl sometimes and you wanna get full but you don't wanna get stuffed or overfully full."
Another popular habit is you may be skipping breakfast, having a small lunch and a huge dinner.
"We're stressed from work all day or whatever we were doing and we're literally starving and so that leads to over eating," Partin said.
If you are munching on some healthier choices Partin said it's important to find a different coping mechanism all together.
"There may be healthier options we're still not addressing the more important issue there which is using food for something that isn't hunger," she said.
Instead of relying on comfort foods when you're feeling stressed try taking a walk, drawing, writing or whatever helps relax you so that you don't end up overeating.