Stress, Food Cravings, and How to Break the Cycle | MOBE

Stress, Food Cravings, and How to Break the Cycle

You might already know about the “fight or flight” response, a leftover reaction from the caveman days when surviving a potential danger meant literally fighting or fleeing. The thing is, even though modern-day stressors aren’t quite the same, our brains and bodies still react with the same flood of emotions to help us prepare to battle or run. One of those hormones called cortisol can make us hungry, often very hungry.

Watch the video to learn more about how everyday stressors can affect your ability to control food cravings—and how food choices can affect your body’s ability to manage everyday stressors.

Content provided by our partners at The Big Know.

Tips for eating resiliently.

It’s so easy to eat mindlessly when you’re stressed. And thanks to the stress hormone cortisol, that mindless eating can make you feel even more stressed. What can you do? These tips can help you feed your body in a way that can help combat stress—instead of adding to it.

At the grocery store

  • Plan your menu for the next week before shopping.
  • Make a list of your favorite healthy yet satisfying snacks to keep on hand.
  • Don’t go shopping while hungry. You might reach for the first thing you see.
  • Shop the perimeter of the store to fill most of your cart with whole foods like fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and foods that contain only one ingredient.

On your plate

  • Divide your plate into a “T”: 25% protein, 25% whole grains, and 50% fruits and veggies.
  • Reach for lean protein sources like white fish, skinless chicken and turkey breasts, pork loin, eggs, tofu, Greek yogurt, cottage cheese, peas, beans, and lentils.
  • Eat as many different colored fruits and veggies as possible to give your body a wider range of important vitamins, minerals, and micronutrients.
  • Choose whole, unprocessed grains whenever possible.

Minute-meal ideas

  • Enjoy a handful of grain-free seed crackers with some tasty hummus.
  • Scramble two eggs, add spinach and top with salsa and avocado.
  • Spread tuna on whole-grain crackers and top them with peppers.
  • Fill a whole-wheat pita with rotisserie chicken and spinach or your favorite vegetables.

Work on your nutrition goals with one-to-one support from a MOBE Guide. Get started today.