Sometimes choosing what to eat is more complicated than knowing what foods are the healthiest options. There’s food availability, considering other people sharing the meal, acknowledging cravings, cultural considerations, and then there is emotional eating. When we consider how food is advertised and used in many cultures as a reward or as a replacement for relationships, it is easy to see how making food choices isn’t as straightforward as simply knowing what foods your body needs to function well.
This handout aims to address this by bringing mindful eating to the forefront and providing tools- like a hunger/ fullness scale to help people get used to the idea that there is a difference between emotional and physical hunger, and how to evaluate it. Once they’ve evaluated their physical hunger and fullness- they can identify and address their emotional hunger. This tool brings awareness to the patient without judgement and helps you as the dietitian better understand where the patient is coming from and implement interventions the patient can more successfully follow through with. This will not only improve patient health, but enrich the dietitian/ patient relationship and facilitate trust– that you are listening and understanding where they are at- and then meeting them there to help them take the next right step for them.