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Heal Your Hunger with Tricia Nelson | The Healthy Me Podcast Episode 016

Welcome to The Healthy Me episode number 16… I’m Trina Felber, Registered Nurse and CEO of Primal Life Organics.

Today I’m speaking with Tricia Nelson, an emotional eating expert who struggled with weight for her entire childhood. She understands and teaches others how to deal with the root cause of unhealthy eating habits.

Tricia explains how food is used as a coping mechanism to deal with life’s struggles, stress, and emotional pain. Emotional eaters tend to use food as a painkiller, as an escape, and/or to deal with guilt.

But the real myth here is that it’s about the food.

The reality is that, no matter what diet is followed or what results are seen, if the root cause of emotional eating isn’t addressed, then the struggle will remain a constant battle in your life and food will remain the enemy.

Tricia mission is to teach people how to live without the crutch of food. She does this by encouraging routines that reduce stress like meditation and self-care, and making sure there are always healthy food options in the house.

Shockingly, we’re all emotional eaters because we’re designed to have an emotional connection to food. The difference is how we manage it and remain in tune with ourselves and our emotions.

Today, I urge you to visit healyourhunger.com/freequiz to see where you land on the spectrum of emotional eating. From there, you can begin to address any unsettled relationship you might have with food.

Transcription

Trina: Hey, guys, Trina here, and today’s topic, I’m super, super excited about. It’s called Heal Your Hunger: How to End Emotional Eating and Start Living because that is the key to happiness is to be able to eat, eat healthy, feel good, and feel like you’re actually alive and living. I’m really excited.

My guest today is Tricia Nelson. Tricia, welcome.

Tricia Nelson: Thank you for having me. Great to see you.

Trina: Oh, it’s great to see you, as well. Let me tell everybody a little bit about you, Tricia. Tricia has lost 50 pounds by identifying and healing the root causes of her emotional eating. She has spent nearly 30 years researching the hidden causes of addictive personality, which is a great topic and something I’m super interested in. Tricia is an emotional eating expert and hosted the popular podcast, The Heal Your Hunger Show. She is a certified coach, speaker, and author of the Amazon Number One Bestseller, Heal Your Hunger: Seven Simple Steps to End Emotional Eating Now. She’s a highly regarded speaker and coach, and she’s been featured on NBC, CBS, KTLA, Fox, and Discovery Health.

I am so excited to talk to you today about eating.

Tricia Nelson: It’s a good topic.

Trina: Tricia, tell me about your own personal journey with food and weight and how you came to help people heal their hunger.

Tricia Nelson: It’s a very personal journey, of course, and I was an emotional eater, I think, from the get go. I love to eat. I love to cook food. I love to serve it to others, play restaurant when I was a kid, everything having to do with food, and it didn’t seem like a problem. I just liked food. The only problem I had was that I did gain weight. As a kid, I was a chubby kid, and I hated it. I hated … I had this roll in my tummy that I would scrunch up in my hands and imagine cutting it off. You know how you cut off the fat on a steak, on the side of a steak? I’m like, “Well, it’s just fat, so can’t you just slice it off?” Thank God I didn’t try.

I had these crazy thoughts, like, “I wanna join the Army where they’d force me to go through bootcamp and I’d automatically lose weight.” That was [crosstalk 00:02:25]-

Trina: That’s pretty extreme.

Tricia Nelson: Tell me about it. Here’s another extreme one. I used to think about getting some drastic disease where I’d lose weight without trying, very drastic, violent thoughts, and that was really just because I was so out of control. I loved to eat, and I couldn’t control my weight, and that combination obviously is really devastating for somebody who doesn’t want to be overweight, and I was. I tried lots of things to overcome it. I tried pills and potions and lotions and self-help books and 12-step programs and therapy, even eating disorders therapy. I was really putting in a good college try and trying to heal my problem, and nothing I tried worked for any length of time, and I got to the point, Trina, where I just felt so just hopeless, like nothing’s going to work for me. I’m going to be spending the rest of my life going up and down the scale, because I was a yo-yo’er, so I gained 30, lose 10, gain 20, lose 5. I’m just all over the place.

I didn’t want to throw out … I didn’t want to wash my pants because I knew they’d shrink. This was before … Thank God we have spandex, but, basically, I just was in this pattern, and I didn’t know what to do about it, and what happened for me is I finally met somebody who told me, “Stop dieting. It’s not gonna work for you, and go inside. Look at the deeper issue,” and that’s really what it was about for me is looking at the underlying causes, and that’s when my whole life turned around and I started dealing with that stuff. My life exploded. I’ve been able to be in a thin body ever since, and then Heal Your Hunger came about, and I was able to share this amazing system for overcoming emotional eating with the world.

Trina: Well, I’m really excited to talk because I know that as far as everything that you said, that roller coaster that you’ve been on, on some level, I think that most people have been on that ride with you, and for some people, it’s a constant struggle, and for some people, it’s not as much of a struggle on a daily basis until you hit the high and then you have to rebalance to the low and then you go back up. Everybody’s emotional journey is different. I really am excited to talk about this, but tell me, first of all, 98%. There’s a statistic that says, “98% of all diets fail.” Why do you think that is true?

Tricia Nelson: Well, it’s really on account of emotional eating. People are overlooking this. Everybody’s all about calories and fat and energy and exercise and carbs versus no carbs, paleo, keto. All that stuff has its place, but everybody’s overlooking the fundamental problem, and that’s, how did we get fat in the first place? That’s because of emotional eating. We have an emotional attachment to food that goes way beyond anything nutritional, and if we don’t take a look at that and get that under control, it doesn’t matter what diet plan we’re on, we’re always going to bust out of it and end up overeating, and so I really think that this is the hidden cause of people’s weight loss struggles.

Trina: We’re all smart. Everybody’s smart out there, and everybody has been on a diet here and there. Everyone has lost the diet battle. Intellectually, if we know they don’t work, why do we keep dieting? Why do we keep going on that next fad?

Tricia Nelson: Isn’t it crazy?

Trina: Yeah.

Tricia Nelson: Any intelligent person will be like, “Oh, yeah, I know diets don’t work,” and, yet, oh, we call it a different thing. We call it a detox or we call it some other thing, keto or whatever. We’re really into this whole idea of controlling our weight, and I think it’s really because of that desperate feeling. It feels so bad to not be able to control your body. To have your body morphing in front of your eyes and not be able to control it is such a desperate feeling, and I totally get that. I’ve been there so many times, and, then, of course, they put all the diets in the checkout line, and we’re just sitting there, standing there waiting to check out at Whole Foods, and even in Whole Foods, they have the healthy form of the diets. It’s everywhere. We get seduced by that, by that idea of a quick fix.

When our house is on fire, we just want to put the fire out. That’s it. People are pretty much like, “I know diets don’t work, but, this time, I’m just gonna do this real quick.” We just get seduced by just how desperate we feel and to get back into control. I think that’s really the problem is that we don’t look at the long game. We’re always looking at the short game. If we sat down and we wrote down all the diets that we’ve tried, we will see that our quick fixes have lasted over 20 years. We got to take a good look at this.

Trina: Comfort. We all find comfort in a different type of food. Everybody’s go-to item is different. Some people, it might be ice cream. Some, chips, whatever, but why are comfort foods so comforting to us? Why do we do that?

Tricia Nelson: Totally. We’re not binging on salads. It’s the carbs. It’s sugary foods. To me, my favorite food groups are sugar, fat, and starch. If you can get them all in one item, like a donut or pastry or muffin, all the better. I think it’s for several reasons. For one, in terms of emotional eating is it kills our emotions. We don’t binge on salads because that’s not going to help us put a blanket on our emotions, and the heavier, carby, more fattening foods literally just deaden our feelings, and that’s what we’re after. We don’t want to feel. We don’t want to feel, and it’s not conscious thing.

For so many years, I’m like, “I just like food. There’s nothing more to it. It’s very simple,” but then I started to wake up and to see, “Wow, it really is an emotional relationship, and when I’m bored, when I’m angry, when I’m just not feeling right, depressed, even happy, I’m reaching for food,” and I had to really take a look at that. That’s really a big reason why we like the carby foods is they satisfy us that way, but, also, I think there’s that emotional eaters have racing minds, so there’s definitely the need for that serotonin hit, and that makes carbs so delicious to us is it’s really chemically, also, doing something in our brains where it’s calming us down because we tend to be anxious types. We tend to be Nervous Nellies, and we overthink, and we worry, and we catastrophize and awfulize and you get a good bowl of cereal, and you’re just chilling out.

Trina: Unfortunately, we get into that daily routine. Here, at The Healthy Me, my basis for this is that there’s a healthy person inside of you, in every person, and we role-play different people throughout our lives, and the person that you function from right now is someone that you created because you’re comfortable with that person right now, but that person may not be the best person to be making the decisions in your life, so calling up something else. This has a lot to do with what you’re talking about with the emotional eating is that from where you are today, it might not be serving you. Is that right?

Tricia Nelson: Oh, completely. The fact is food … Overeating saved my life. I didn’t have a terrible childhood, but I had pain. I definitely had pain, and I had sexual abuse in my past, and I had things I was burying, a lot of emotions I was burying, and so it served me. I don’t know that I would have really been able to come out of my childhood, sane at least, if I hadn’t had food to depend on. It serves its purpose. It does an amazing job, but then it really overstays its welcome and stops serving you, and that’s what it did for me is it really turned on me to where I hated my body, I hated myself for being out of control, and it turned on me in so many ways. I felt isolated. I didn’t feel like I could really connect with my friends because, after a binge, I felt disgusting. It’s just so many different ways that it isolated me to be an emotional eater.

Just the obsession itself, always thinking about food, all the time. In spite of being with somebody or being with people I love, to love food more, that’s not a good experience. It’s really important to know that it affects us in so many negative ways. Where one time it did serve us, now it really doesn’t.

Trina: That’s really interesting that you say that with abuse because a lot of people, it’s a protective mechanism. Your body goes into protective mode. Your brain goes into protective mode. I preach this a lot of times with my skincare, as well. What we practice today, we didn’t know better back then. Even with emotional eating and the things-

Trina: Even with emotional eating and the things that we lived through that, at that moment, it was a protective mechanism for us. Today, we don’t have to live with that, but it’s recognizing it. So I love that you’re talking about this and getting people more aware of it. What would you say are the three main causes of emotional eating and food addiction?

Tricia Nelson: Over the years, I mean, I’ve been doing this work for 30 years now and I’ve really identified three primary drivers, like the three main emotions because people are always like, “What is it? What’s the one thing?”

Well, it’s a lot of things, but there are three primary emotions. This is again how we use food, how it serves us, is we use food as … I call it the PEP test. The P is as a painkiller, so we use food as a painkiller. When we have emotional pain, when we have stress, when we’re going through something superuncomfortable, we want to deaden that pain and food does an amazing job, right, with the carbs?

Trina: Oh, it does great. Yeah.

Tricia Nelson: Yeah, it works.

The E in the PEP test stands for escape and so we not only have pain, but we have fear, and we want to get away from it all. This is certainly the case for me. I look like a bold person, I did a lot of crazy things. I was a car mechanic in Spain, you know, I’ve done some wild things. But deep down in my core, I was very afraid. So that’s what we do, is we eat because of that fear, and we want to just get away.

We’re also superresponsible in terms of addictions. Like, alcoholics they can often be really irresponsible. Emotional eaters, the foodies, tend to be really superresponsible because they’re taking care of the alcoholics, basically. But what happens is, is that we get sick of doing it. We get sick of being responsible, and we’re, like, “I want to get my goodies, get in front of my TV and just tuning the world out because it’s too much.” We just need time to escape and so that’s another reason why we eat.

The third is on account of guilt. Emotional eaters are incredibly sensitive, or we wear our heart on our sleeve and feel deeply. So we feel guilt deeply, and we take things to heart. Where other people are, like, they just blow it off, it rolls off their back, for us, we’re obsessing about things that we’ve done, we feel terrible about. Then we beat the crap out of ourselves with our eating and so it’s a form of punishment in terms of the last P in PEP.

People don’t think of that because food seems like a reward. Like, we’re getting our goodies, and we’re having a Friday night in front of the TV or bingeable TV shows, so it seems like a reward. The “I deserve it” binge, I call it. But the next day, when we’ve gone too far, and we’re bloated, we feel terrible, we cancel appointment with friends because we feel sick, or we’re embarrassed, we don’t feel like we look good, all these things, and that’s what we did to ourselves. Nobody did that to us. We actually brought that on ourselves.

So it really does beg the question, why would we do that? Why would we be so self-destructive with food? I really believe it’s because of this sense of guilt, that deep sense of guilt that we have. So these are the three drivers, the pain, the fear, and the guilt and, unless those are addressed, we’ll always go back into that patterns.

That’s why diets are so stupid because you diet and then nothing has been dealt with and so all you do is taken away your main coping tool. Then you’re left with all this pain, fear, and guilt and you have no idea what to do with it. You don’t even know it’s got a name. You just feel crappy, and you’re, like, “I need to eat again.” That’s where the cravings come from. Cravings don’t just happen. They really emerge from our need to run for cover from whatever it is we’re feeling.

Trina: Yeah, I totally agree. What would say would be the biggest myth then that surrounds weight loss?

Tricia Nelson: Well, that it’s about the food. I mean it’s silly, and I totally get it. It’s not like it’s obvious. When you’re overeating, it is about the food, you know? When you’re obsessed with chocolate and you drive at 11:00 at night to go get your chocolate fix or your ice cream and Doritos fix, it’s about the food. So it seems like it’s about the food, it seems like it’s all about the food, but it’s really not. That’s a symptom.

It’s a symptom of something much deeper and so we get really mesmerized by the symptom. It’s about the food, it’s about the weight loss and it’s really not. It’s really such a deeper journey. If you address the underlying causes, then the weight does take care of itself because you’re not needing to run for cover anymore. You’re at peace. Imagine that? Feeling at peace with your feelings, feeling at peace with situations, having more tools to deal with them.

My program is really teach people how to literally live without the crutch of food so that you can be in the world without always, always, always obsessing and eating something, basically.

Trina: I think most people can recognize that they have eaten emotionally and they have eaten when they’re hungry physically. When you’re not in the moment, and we can talk about, because when you’re in the moment, it’s hard to figure that out. How do you figure it out when you’re emotional and when you’re physically hungry?

Tricia Nelson: It’s a good question because they seem so similar. I mean even to this day, I’ve been doing this for 30 years, even to this day I can trick myself. I can be sitting there and thinking, “Oh, I’m so hungry,” and literally have this conversation with myself. I’m like, “Oh, I’m so hungry,” and then I talk to myself. I’m like, “Really? You just had lunch two hours ago. Are you really hungry?”

That’s really the key because and this is how I’m able to tell, is that … It’s something I call Three Meal Magic, which is three meals a day with something in … with nothing in between, not something. But when you don’t eat between your meals, but you have good meals, like nutritious full meals, in between meals, you’re going to have some hunger and you’re going to have some emotions, okay? They go together. This is why people don’t want to feel hunger. This is why people snack all day long.

Trina: It’s uncomfortable, right.

Tricia Nelson: Exactly.

Trina:  We don’t want to put our bodies in uncomfortable situations.

Tricia Nelson: Yeah. So for me it’s very helpful to have my three meals so that when I am hungry in between my meal, I can have this adult conversation with this hungry child and say, “You just had lunch two hours ago. Chances are, you’re not as hungry as you think you are. What else might be going on?” It’s usually something I need to do work-wise that I’m dreading doing or a phone call I don’t want to make, something I’m afraid of, or something that I’m pain about, or something that I feel guilty about, basically, and I could do that sleuthing work.

But having those clear meals helps me to do that sleuthing work. It makes it very clear. Whereas if I’m eating all day, I don’t know what’s an emotion and I don’t know what’s real hunger. It’s just very hard to tell and for emotional eaters, that’s by far the best way to eat because it just gets really clear.

Then it’s very obvious when you’re emotional eating because you’re, like, “Wow. I’m in between my meals and I’m clearly not hungry and yet I feel the need to eat.” This is the first time sometimes people wake up to the fact that they are emotional eaters when they are trying not to eat between meals.

Trina: Well, that totally makes sense because if you’re eating between meals and you’re not really, like, you don’t need to eat, you’re going to notice when you’re hungry so your body is going to be more in tune to the signs that you are hungry. When you’re eating snacks, even if you just call it a snack, equate a snack more with an emotional response or an emotional binge or whatever you want. To me that totally makes sense.

Tricia Nelson: Yeah.

Trina: What’s the number one weight loss mistake that we really should try to avoid?

Tricia Nelson: There’s a lot of them, but I think the really most dangerous one I think for an emotional eater is really to skip meals and this goes back to the three meals a day. A lot of emotional eaters skip meals. Of all people in the world, the emotional eaters are the ones who aren’t eating.

Trina: Well, yeah, because you’re trying to lose weight. Most of the time you’re trying to lose weight-

Tricia Nelson: Exactly.

Trina: … so you’re, like, “I’m going to skip that meal.” Then the next thing you know you’re so emotional that you ate three times the amount you were going to eat for lunch.

Tricia Nelson: That’s exactly right. That’s why it’s such a trap for people because the emotional eater’s mind is like, “Ooh, I’m going to game the system here. Like, this is a good hack. I’m going to skip my lunch. I’m going to work straight through lunch.” But it always backfires because, first of all, your body is going to get pissed off. It’s going to be, like, “No, no, no. I’m doing all this for you today. You better freaking feed me,” you know?

Trina: Right, and then when it’s over, like, when you take one bite, you think, “Okay, I can just have one bite now,” you can’t. You’re so hungry that you overeat.

Tricia Nelson: Yeah, it’s so easy to binge when you’re superextrahungry so it’s just so much better. Like, you’ll eat so much less. I mean it’s counterintuitive, but you’ll eat so much less if you actually feed yourself regularly.

Trina: I totally think that’s true. You know what, how do we manage stress? Stress is huge, everybody has it, so let’s put the elephant in the room. How do we manage our stress before it actually drives us to the refrigerator or the kitchen, the cabinet that has the chips in it, those types of things?

Tricia Nelson: People are always like, “How do I stop once I started eating the chips?” It’s too late. You need to start way before that and that’s with the stress. It’s not the caboose on the train that hits you, it’s the first car in the train, so the stress is really the driver of so much stress eating, obviously.

What people need to do is have a morning routine where they get centered. They get still and quiet and centered and they really tap into a source of energy that’s there for them. Because if they don’t, later in the day … And you can’t eliminate stress, it happens, but later in the day, if you haven’t kind of made that connection, it’s really, to me, it’s a spiritual connection with your divine self or higher self or God or whatever you call it, but you got to tap in. When you do that, you get centered.

Meditation is great for that, prayer is good for that, journaling. I do all these things. I also do something called a walk praise. So I go for a walk and I pray. I put my earbuds in and I talk to God, you know? So it’s that. Making a connection kind of establishes an open channel for me that I can draw on throughout the day so I can deal with stress.

But I will say there’s also another thing at play here and emotional eaters, as I said, it’s not just about the food, or it’s not all about the food. But the truth is there’s actually a personality profile of an emotional eater and this goes way beyond food. There are way emotional eaters really react and respond to life that’s different than your average person. I call this the anatomy of the emotional eater. A lot of our stress actually comes from these 24 personality traits that make up the anatomy of emotional eater.

I’ll give you an example of this. The number one personality trait of an emotional eater is being a people pleaser.

Trina: Of course. Of course.

Tricia Nelson: Every emotional eater is a consummate people pleaser and, of course, me as well and so-

Trina: I think if you’re a mom that goes without saying.

Tricia Nelson: I mean it’s definitely more of a female trait as well, truthfully. It’s hard not to be that when you’re a woman, I think. But emotional eaters, especially, don’t want to have boundaries with …

Tricia Nelson: …but emotional eaters, especially, don’t have boundaries with their time and don’t know how to say, “No,” and so we end up people pleasing.

It’s also because we typically didn’t get a solid sense of self esteem as a kid, and so we think that we need to get it from outside of ourselves. We think that’s the obvious place to get it, and so we’re constantly saying, “Yes,” to people and agreeing to things and taking on extra work and projects in hopes of getting that validation that we’re so desperately seeking, and it really gets us into trouble because it’s really not about pleasing somebody else. It’s really about getting that validation.

What happens is we’re typically … Our expectations are dashed because nobody appreciates us to the point where we expected them to, and especially not commensurate with the amount of work, amount of ass busting that we did. We end up not only exhausted and overtired, but we’re also pissed off because we never get it to our satisfaction, and then, again, we go home, and we’re like, “Well, nobody else appreciates me. I’m gonna serve myself with this beautiful, wonderful food,” and so we have the “I deserve it” binge, and that just shows you that it’s our own personality that’s setting us up really for failure, and that’s good news because so much of the time, people think cravings just happen, they just befall us, but they don’t. So much of the time, it comes from the way we’re interacting in our lives, and that means we can do something about it, because it’s on us. We can stop people pleasing. We can set boundaries. We can decide that whatever crumbs of validation we get is not worth the amount of stress that we’re creating in our lives, and we can say, “No,” or, “I have too much on my plate. I’m not able to do it,” which is never a lie.

It’s just really important that we realize that these traits are really setting us up with the stress that we then stress eat over, and it can be deconstructed. We can definitely unpack that and make different choices.

Trina: Well, I love that you didn’t make it like, “Oh, poor me. There’s nothing I can do.” I love how you point out that it’s doable and fixable. You can fix this. You can change this. You just have to work on yourself. It’s all about you.

In this day and age, a lot people do more for themselves as far as self help and things like that, and they’re more in tune with their bodies, and really just being in tune with yourself and knowing who you are, and it’s always growing. You’re always growing, and you’re always making yourself better.

I have a question. What about, since there are a lot of moms that are going to be watching this, how do you create healthy habits or a healthy emotional person for your kids? How do you raise this up in your family, because working on yourself is one thing, but portraying that … I would imagine that when you’re working on yourself, obviously, your kids are going to model after you, but I’d love to hear your thoughts about raising a family with this talking about healthy foods.

Tricia Nelson: Totally. It’s true. I always say, “It’s not a childhood obesity epidemic. It’s a parent obesity epidemic,” because kids are doing what their parents are doing, but it’s definitely true that when we, as parents, work on ourselves, it definitely … That’s the biggest impact we can make on our kids. I say, “Our,” I’m not actually a mom. I’m a stepmom and grandmom, but, basically, monkey see, monkey do. Kids are going to do what their parents are doing. The more we are self-caring, that’s the best thing to model to your kids is having boundaries. The best thing you can model your kids is not being a people pleaser.

It’s so, again, counterintuitive because moms are like, “No, but I have to do everything. There are so many people pulling at me. I have to … I have to prostrate myself for all the needs that need to be served,” but the best message we can send our kids is when we realize our own limitations and we set boundaries, we know our limits and we’re realistic about our limits, instead of being totally stressed out and maxed out all the time. That’s not something to model. I think self-care is such an important message for our kids and watching mom … If mom takes 20 minutes before dinner to meditate, not easy to do, I get, totally not easy to do, but, first of all, she’s going to eat less at dinner. As she’s making her food, she’s not going to be shoveling it in as she’s cooking dinner because she’s taking that time for herself.

When we come through the door after work or a hard day, we tend to eat just to calm ourselves down, whereas if we go to the bedroom and we take 20 minutes or even 10 minutes, put on some relaxing music, and meditation’s the best, but if you just literally get horizontal and just listen to some peaceful music with a candle burning, you’re going to be in such a different state when you walk into the kitchen. You’re going to eat less, but you’re also going to be nicer to your kids, and your kids are going to be … They’re going to soon figure out the connection between Mommy me time, that 10 minutes before dinner, and how loving she seems to be because we just have done the job of destressing.

I just think self-care is really the number one thing we can do for our kids, but, directly, in terms of their eating, just having, I think, the three meals is super helpful. Kids snack. That’s what they do, but [crosstalk 00:29:54]-

Trina: They’re snacking is less emotional. Theirs is more physical because they’re growing.

Tricia Nelson: Exactly. That’s totally understandable, but, again, watching parents have a healthier relationship with food is going to impact them, as well. Obviously, being restrictive with your kids doesn’t help. That’s not the way to go, and just helping them really get identified with when they’re hungry and when they’re not hungry, I think, is so important, as well.

Trina: Awesome. Another question I have is, what are the three things people can do to begin changing their relationship with food?

Tricia Nelson: So important. I’d say we’ve talked about some of them. Having a self-care practice, super important, super, super. Have some kind of morning routine that’s spiritual and helps you get connected to your source. That is going to be so helpful for setting you up throughout the day. Also, making sure that you can have healthy foods in the house. I know it’s not easy, moms. The hardest job in the planet is to be a mom, but making sure that you have on the ready healthy foods to eat because it’s so easy to defer to junk food and fast food, so just making sure you’ve got those.

There are some great recipe services out there, like PrepDish and other things, where you get recipes and you learn how to just do some prepping ahead of time so that you can pull different plastic containers out of the fridge and have salad makings already done, because it takes time to chop and have these things ready, so when you can do some of the prepping ahead of time and just have them in Tupperware containers, that can certainly help, as well.

Then, again, not skipping meals, taking care … The big message and takeaway is self-care. You got to put yourself first, especially as a mom. Put your oxygen mask on first, and it’s going to have a huge impact on your kids.

Trina: That’s right. Absolutely. Oh, Tricia, I’m so glad we had this talk. Tell me, you have a quiz or something that people can go to about emotional eating. I know everybody out there’s probably like, “Yes. I know I have some problems here. I’m gonna clarify this for myself,” but give them some information on what they can do, what your followup would be.

Tricia Nelson: Everybody’s an emotional eater. It’s not like you’re not an emotional eater. Everybody’s an emotional eater. I think we were designed to have some kind of an emotional connection to food, so we keep eating and subsist as a planet, but it’s a spectrum, and everybody’s on a different place in the spectrum. On the low end of the spectrum is emotional eating. On the high end is food addiction. I have a quiz. It’s an emotional eating quiz where you can find out … Literally, you get a personalized score of where you are on that spectrum, and then you have action steps you can take after that. Find out if you’re an emotional eater or a food addict by taking this quiz, and you can go to HealYourHunger.com/freequiz. It’s HealYourHunger.com/freequiz, and then, again, take your quiz, get your personalized score and just learn where you are in the spectrum because I think everybody’s got the tendencies, but what you do about it is going to be determined by where you are on that spectrum.

Trina: Awesome. I’m definitely going to be doing that. Guys, don’t forget to check out her book because it’s a great book, Heal Your Hunger: Seven Simple Steps to End Emotional Eating Now, and pass this along to anybody you know, friends, family. It’s a really good way to get in tune with yourself, and we’ve all struggled over years, some more than others, with food and what’s it done to our bodies, what it’s done to our emotions, what it’s done to our health and even our looks. Our ego, sometimes, is tied to how we look.

It’s really a great topic, Tricia. I really appreciate everything that you’ve shared with us today. Again, they can find you at HealYourHunger.com, right?

Tricia Nelson: Absolutely. HealYourHunger.com.

Trina: Awesome. Anything else that you want to share with us before we are finished?

Tricia Nelson: Just be really sweet to yourself, super important.

Trina: Awesome. Set those routines and get yourself thinking three meals a day. At least give it a try so that you’re in tune to your body, in tune to your mind, and in tune to your emotions. I appreciate it. Thank you, Tricia, for joining me [crosstalk 00:34:27].

Tricia Nelson: Thank you so much for having me.

Trina: Oh, you’re welcome. All right. Bye, everybody.

Thanks for watching. Make sure you subscribe to keep learning how to create your healthy self. See you next time.

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