Health & Nutrition

Why emotional management through food is probably not the best idea…

My relationship to my body has not always been easy. Indeed, it has never been easy as far as I remember… I have been reflecting a lot on this topic since I started travelling and doing more and more Yoga.

One of Yoga’s special effects is, that through stepping on the path of it, you are also stepping on the path of getting to know your body more closely and understanding ist uniqueness, its beauty, needs and flaws.

What I found out about my body and the topic weight, which has been a challenge for me since my puberty, is, that I had been abusing food as a way to suppress my emotions and feelings throughout my teenage years and early twenties up until now.

It began with the break up of my parents in the year 2002 and the following ‚silent war’ that lasted a couple of years. My parents have never been fighting loudly, screaming at each other or expressing any kinds of emotions. They rather choose the path of staying silent and treating each other like air, repressing all feelings until they got physically sick because their body could not handle it anymore. I guess I started imitating their way of dealing with my pain, sadness, anger, frustration and so on because I did not know any better. My help for suppressing all emotions was food. Therefore, I gained a lot of weight from 13 to 15, I would guess around 10 kilo. At 13 my weight was 53 kg and then by the time I turned 15 it had increased to 65 kg. It would probably have been fine, if it had stayed balanced afterwards, but that was not the case. All through my time at high school my weight fluctuated between 60 and at times even 80 kg. This was a though battle for me and kept me occupied, as you can imagine 24/7. Most of my thoughts were running around food and did not give me much capacity of handling any other emotions or dealing with issues. There was just enough time for school work and functioning like everybody else expected me to but not for much more. Now thinking about it, it would have been great, if somebody would have sent me to some type of therapist, although that would maybe have messed me up even more… Anyhow, you can definitely call this type of behavior eating disorder from my point of view now. I tried to control my diet with exercise, food control, fasting etc. But of course nothing could work long-term, because I did not deal with the underlying issues. Therefore, all that could constantly happen was the well-known Jojo-effect. As you can imagine, I was not a very happy but a very emotional teenager and my family and boyfriend regularly got in the blessings of my mood swings. Sometimes I was very happy and glowing with joy and in the next minute, if something triggered my suppressed emotions I got really angry, pissed of or sad. Most of the time I did not succeed in hiding my emotions but let them either out pretty obviously or in a “silent manner”, which meant just ignoring somebody or being really bitchy whenever somebody would there to talk to me. Luckily we all somehow survived this period of time :D.

Then at one point I decided it was enough and I had to start looking at all the suppressed emotions, starting off with the time off my parents separation and the following divorce. The relationship to my dad has from that time on been quite difficult and when I started with some kinesiology sessions I could hardly talk about him without crying, there was so much pain, sadness, anger and frustration it is hard to replicate. Slowly I started dissolving some of these deep rooted emotions and letting them go. I worked with different people and techniques and tried out several things to see which resonates most with me. Interestingly enough the friend that brought me to my first Yoga lesson also did my first kinesiology session with me, where I cried nearly all through it. In the nlp course we also worked with some very powerful techniques to find out the underlying issues/emotions of some habits/routines you are stuck with. Furthermore, I met some amazing people and coaches in this course that helped me through some difficult situations of my life and gave me a lot of inspiration as well as strength for the future.

After all this emotional work and inspiring situations I found myself in, the real transformation slowly started happening…

I began finding out or even asking the question what I truly want from life and what my passion is, what I am burning for. This was the first time, I actually did something just for me without constantly looking over my shoulder to see what others are doing or expecting me to do. The first big leap I then did for myself was to apply for the semester abroad in Vancouver.

–> from there on I think, you already know what happened 🙂 (former blog posts).

Well, coming back to the food topic. This is just the way my body uses to show me, I still have a lot of work to do. I still struggle with keeping my weight balanced. As soon as there is a change or event in my life that is hard to handle (emotionally), I use carbs (bread) and sweets (anything really) to ease myself out of these uncomfortable emotions. Then my body reacts and gets addicted to sugar, which makes it a struggle to get out of the vicious circle again. I hope to get closer to a long-term solution for handling change in a better way or at least recognizing it earlier to be able to find support.

I feel that writing all of this down and sharing it, is already a big and important step for me. As always with writing, I reflect for myself and realize new aspects that I haven’t noticed before. I’ll keep you posted what’s going to happen next.

Thank you for listening.

Namaste & so much love

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