Anxiety and related disorders are one of the most common psychological conditions in children, adolescents, and adults. According to Ximena Osorio, a psychologist at the University of La Sabana, she is characterized by recurrent and anticipatory thoughts about negative or uncomfortable situations, which can derail somatic symptoms such as the irrational craving for sugar consumption, among others.
This increase in appetite for the sweet (the release of dopamine has been associated as a reinforcing effect found in the sweet taste of food) is a risk factor to present the possibility of overweight and, therefore, metabolic consequences, such as elevation of blood pressure and increased levels of cortisol (the hormone responsible for maintaining the feeling of discomfort and negative emotional states).
To avoid falling into this situation, first there is a question that every person must ask himself, do I suffer from sugar anxiety?
There are certain warning signs that you can easily identify to know if you suffer from this, these are:
· If you eat sweet when you feel stressed, tired, irritated or just in a state of discomfort or tension.
· If you eat sweets when you eat compulsively and not in a slow manner.
· If you get up at night or at “abnormal” times to eat sweets.
· If after eating sweets you feel guilty.
· If there are times when you do not know the difference between cravings, hunger real or anxiety.
If you check any of these points, you will most likely suffer from this anxiety and you are not dealing with emotional situations in the right way. If so, these tips will help you control anxiety and stop the emotional consumption of sugar. Follow them and goodbye to anxiety !:
· Breakfast: Never skip breakfast and always eat a good protein. The protein (eggs, oatmeal, yogurt) helps maintain good levels of blood sugar and causes a feeling of fullness for a longer time.
· Exercise: Physical activity helps you release the hormones associated with happiness and well-being, which over time makes your body learn to level cortisol levels more easily, preventing episodes of anxiety.
· Drink water: Consuming the recommended amounts of water per day (8 glasses / 2 liters on average), helps us manage the appetite. In addition, by keeping our body hydrated, it remains in a level state, since a state of dehydration promotes mood swings.
· Listen to your body and breathe: When you feel this type of cravings, close your eyes and try to identify the origin of this. Ask yourself if you really are hungry and why in this way little by little you can go educating and knowing your body/mind. Concentrate on your breathing, inhale and exhale deeply, a good breathing technique is an excellent tool to deal with episodes of anxiety and stress.
· Eat foods that fight anxiety: Asparagus, almonds, avocado, blueberries, oats, turkey, fish rich in omega and fatty acids such as salmon and dark chocolate (which brings a concentration of cocoa between the 75 and 80%) are foods that, incorporated in your diet, help you to prevent anxiety and maintain a good mood .
· Avoid eating foods that induce anxiety: Caffeine, sugar, a lot of salt, fried and processed, as well as regular consumption of alcohol, make the body develop a greater vulnerability to anxiety and irrational consumption of candy.
· Identify situations of stress: When you feel anxious to eat sweet, identify every aspect of the situation you are experiencing at that time, did your boss scold you? Did you argue with a loved one? Did you not sleep well? This will help you to know the real cause of your stress and thus start taking effective measures to deal with this.
· Load a fruit with you: If at some point you truly feel that you should consume something, the best alternative is a fruit and thus avoid falling before the temptation to eat sweets.
· Rest: Sleeping between 6 and 8 hours a day, and during the same hours each day, is key to your mental health. The emotional balance of people is strongly linked to the level of rest, and adequate sleep ensures good levels of energy during the day.
· Work on your self-esteem: Feeling comfortable with who you are and accepting yourself, is key to cultivating a healthy lifestyle, one in which you do not allow yourself to fall before the stress of situations and in which you take care of what your body consumes.
We asked Ximena Osorio, a psychologist from the Universidad de la Sabana with specialization in clinical and educational work of children and adolescents, who can suffer this and what recommendations can they follow?
According to statistics, 20% of the world population may suffer from an anxiety disorder in their life. Regarding gender, 38% are men and 62% are women, and can occur in children, adolescents, and adults.
Knowing the emotional factors related to anxiety, healthy habits can be reinforced to control the intake of sweet food in this case. If you follow the daily recommendations that apply and still the symptoms or anxious behavior persist, it is necessary to go to a professional, a psychologist will help you find the best way to manage your emotional part and align it with your well-being.