During the cooler months we may feel the winter blues, which might distract us from maintaining our health and wellness routine. This brings me to discuss “Mood Intolerance” and how we manage our emotions. What is Mood Intolerance? Its difficulty in managing negative emotions and moods (hurt, fear, anger, disappointment, sadness) and using short term relief to avoid or get rid of the feeling. People may use various vices to relieve them of their discomfort, such as excessive eating and exercise. Unfortunately, in the long term these vices do not prevent the unwanted negative experience and they can in turn cause additional health problems.
Negative moods are a universal human experience. Generally, they dissipate over time of their own accord. Studies show that while people tend to give comfort foods credit for helping them feel better, eating such foods has no measurable impact on mood. The individual learns to associate the “behaviour” with an improved mood, it’s actually not the food itself!
So how do we learn to move through our negative emotions and mood without heading to the fridge or pantry? Firstly, it’s important to recognize and acknowledge the negative emotion or mood, then engage in an activity that may be helpful, such as: doing a relaxation exercise, diaphragmatic breathing, listening to music, calling a friend, taking a walk, exercise class (Thai Chi, Yoga, Pilates) or doing something creative like craft, painting or colouring.
So if you have food cravings or feel like you engage in emotional eating at times, try these out! Personally I’m a big lover of diaphragmatic breathing (meditation), yoga, pilates or sometimes a run, depending upon what’s going on and my time limitations. Two minutes of diaphragmatic breathing can be really helpful in a short period of time. Acknowledge your feelings and before heading to the pantry, fridge or vending machine, feel what activity would best serve you.
Also ensure you are eating a balanced healthy diet that includes all the macronutrients and regular exercise. Eating a balanced diet is important for managing your food cravings and energy levels.
If you feel like you’ve fallen off the wagon and can’t get back on, feel free to contact me for nutritional advice at The Rose or http://www.zenpilatesperth.com.au. For motivation and tips follow me on Instagram (andrea_zencich) and Facebook (Zen Nutrition Pilates Yoga)
Keep up the good work during the cooler days!… and remember “Its what we do mostly that matters!”
In Health and Happiness