How to Overcome Guilt while Eating
Eating well means avoiding fast food, sweets, and other not-so-healthy choices. But eating those not-so-healthy foods feels so good. Guilt is a natural consequence of doing something that feels wrong or goes against our values in some way. Yet guilt should not be the end result of eating something you don’t feel good about. While it won’t be easy you can overcome your feelings of guilt while eating and continue to make healthy choices in the future.
Be Realistic about your Eating Habits
Being overly critical of yourself or feeling guilty about every food choice you make can be detrimental to your health and your self-esteem. If all you’re doing is beating yourself up, you’re not going to want to eat right. Try to look at each food decision you make with a realistic eye. If you’re eating well most of the time, and then have a few treats here and there, you’re probably not going to feel too guilty.
Don’t Deprive Yourself
There’s a difference between eating healthy and depriving yourself of what you want. If you’re eating only salads and plain chicken and you don’t feel like you’re getting enough variety or nutrition, it’s only a matter of time before you cave in and start eating unhealthily again. It’s important to be flexible and open to new things when you’re trying to eat well. Don’t feel like you have to eat something just because it’s healthy.
Enjoy Your Favorite Foods in Moderation
Many of our favorite foods can be considered “unhealthy.” It’s easy to say eat whatever you want in moderation and then justify eating an entire cake in one sitting because it’s a “once in a while thing.” Moderation is important, of course, but it’s also easy to say without having a specific standard of moderation in mind. The important thing to remember is that moderation means different things for different people. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to enjoying your favorite foods in moderation. Make sure you’re being honest about what moderation is right for you.
Take Care of Yourself First
A healthy diet is not just about eating a certain way. It’s also about taking care of your mental and emotional needs. Sure, a well-balanced diet is important, but how much time are you spending prioritizing yourself? How much time are you spending on activities that bring you joy? Are you getting enough sleep? Are you spending time with friends or significant others? Are you exercising regularly? All of these factors contribute to your health and well-being.
Commit to a Healthy Lifestyle
A healthy lifestyle is not about achieving perfection. It’s about making healthy choices more often than unhealthy ones. If you’re eating well 80% of the time and then allowing yourself to eat whatever you want the other 20%, you’re not going to feel guilty. Focus on committing to a healthy lifestyle, not on being perfect. It’s almost impossible to make healthy choices 100% of the time. If you’re trying to do that, you’re setting yourself up for guilt and disappointment.
Eating well shouldn’t leave you feeling guilty. It should leave you feeling good and energized. Guilt is a natural feeling, but it’s often a sign that something is wrong. If you’re feeling guilty, look at what you’re doing and try to make adjustments so you feel better about your eating habits and your choices.
This article is written by a therapist from Sensera – a self-help app that provides daily CBT audio sessions and exercises. The app helps people deal with a variety of mental issues (anxiety, low self-esteem, and relationship problems). Download Sensera now to become happier!