I finally got around to seeing the “Sex and the City” movie this weekend. And believe it or not, among those unrealistically thin bodies was a segment on emotional eating!

Turns out Samantha had been using food to avoid cheating on her boyfriend with her hot next-door neighbour; in her words, “I eat so I don’t cheat.” Although it was really just a caricature of emotional eating (the “fat” she gained was the most microscopic of bulges in her tummy), I was pleased to see that this topic is gaining mainstream attention.

This scene got me thinking, though. Often people emotionally eat to avoid emotions, but what kinds of behaviours might people be avoiding by eating?  In this case, it was doing something that was in her nature, but given her relationship status, would have been wrong. 

Are there things you wish you could be doing that you feel are somehow wrong given your situation? Do you fantasize about running away and starting a new life without all your current obligations and responsibilities?  Do you wish you could be living someone else’s life? 

It’s worth asking yourself these questions, and answering them honestly. Even if you can’t do what it is you really want to be doing (in Samantha’s case, leave her boyfriend so she could go back to her free agent ways), just admitting to yourself that you’re not that happy might do the trick.  Finding a way to change the situation, compromising it, or accepting things as they are could be the ticket to reducing your emotional eating patterns.