Therapeutic Fasting Uncovers Your Food Triggers

Originally Published in June 2010. Updated links, content, and ah-has July 2017.

I was reading an article this morning about hunger and how most people don’t know what it is or what it feels like. Even I, after fasting for 42 days now, am not completely sure that *I* know what true hunger is. I know what it is to have my stomach rumble, grumble and generally gnaw at me, but according to the many books that I have read, this is not true hunger.

Regardless, during my rest from food it has come to my attention how much we are programmed/guilted into eating food. There are so many reasons that we have the urge to eat that have nothing to do with satisfying our physical hunger. Here are just a few of the culprits that may have been pushing my hungry buttons (and I’m not even talking about emotional eating):

  • habits or conditioning makes you think that you are hungry
  • programmed eating like breakfast, lunch and dinner keeps you focused on food
  • seeing others eating around you
  • seeing food on television, looking at pictures in magazines
  • driving down the highway and passing all the fast food restaurants, and billboards
  • being in a supermarket surrounded by food
  • strong food odors and smells

Thanksgiving Dinner 3732064_640This has never been more plainly experienced by me than to last night be laying on the couch watching an episode of Family Guy (a cartoon sitcom) and watching the cartoon family eat their cartoon dinner and all the sudden I wanted what they were having… potatoes, peas, meat. We also watched Blade Runner, which takes place in Tokyo I think. And when Deckard started eating noodles, I found that I wanted some. When later in the movie he starts drinking hard liquor, I wanted some of that too.

Well, its unreasonable to think that you won’t watch TV, won’t drive by billboards, won’t smell the neighbors cookout, and won’t ever see people eating around you – not unless you live in some remote area with few people. So what do you do?

  • Own it. Honestly, it is best to acknowledge the thoughts and just let them go. Just because you have a thought does not mean that you have to act upon it.
  • Breathe into it. Sometimes, we forget to breathe, and breathing into the ‘want’ or ‘need’ or emptiness can sometimes fill it up.
  • Tap on it. Notice what you’re attracted to. Notice what’s bothering you and tap using whichever tapping points you like. It’s only important to let it go. You can check out my 5 minute Intro to Tapping here:
  • Distract yourself. Think about or do something else. If it’s a TV program try to notice things in the scene that you might not have paid attention to before. If you are driving, make sure you are paying adequate attention to the road. If it’s people around you, put your attention elsewhere. Oftentimes, when the guys at work get their lunches (fried foods and burritos), I decide to take a restroom break, or walk around the block. It helps to clear my head, and it also strengthens my resolve.
  • Sniff. Smells are tricky – like invisible landmines in the air – for me because I swear that some restaurants pipe ‘food smells’ into the air to catch your attention. That said, have you ever noticed that the food in a restaurant never tastes as good as it smelled outside the restaurant? Personally, I keep a small glass vial of essential oils (appetite suppressant recipe below) that I can sniff to clear/clean out my nasal passages. You can do the same with any strong smell that won’t make you want whatever you’re sniffing. I mean, don’t sniff coffee beans if you really love coffee. If all else fails, breath through your mouth. =)

Essential Oil Mixture. In a 1:1:1 ratio combine Grapefruit, Orange, Lime, and Lemon essential oils. (Shortcut and use a Citrus Blend.)

Breathe Deeply.

Are you dealing with intrusive thoughts of food?

Download this MP3 designed to clear the food thoughts out of your head.

Image Credits:
     Hoach Le Dinh      PIX1861 licensed under Pixabay License
     LillyCantabile licensed under Pixabay License

Christy R. Hall

Christy R. Hall is a Wellness Mindset Coach & Emotional Alchemist. She focuses on helping people change their lives from the inside out. She uses hypnosis, Rapid Transformational Therapy (RTT), Emotional Freedom Techniques (EFT) and Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) to help her clients achieve real and lasting change. Christy says, “When you know how the mind works, it’s easy to make changes.” Christy fancies herself to be a Jedi Master, a verbal Ninja, and a Mindset Architect. In her free time, she spins yarn (both literally spinning fiber into yarn, as well as, writing), crochets for charity, watches silly cat videos, looks at pictures of Corgis, and plays massively multiplayer online games. Her current favorite is Elder Scrolls Online.