Emotional Hunger vs. Physical Hunger and More [Podcast]

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I describe how to tell the difference between emotional hunger and physical hunger. I help Karlygash distinguish between selfishness and selflessness so that she can practice self-care without guilt.

Sarah, who didn’t realize she was eating emotionally until she read my book, wanted to know how to feel emotions. We explored how to express her feelings and how to respond to them.

Kristina called with an update, which she called “a miracle” and she is thrilled that she can keep any kind of previously-forbidden food in the house without worrying about bingeing or overeating.

Don’t miss this informative and heartwarming show!


You're listening to the Dr. Nina Show with Dr. Nina Savelle Rocklin only on LA Talk Radio.

Dr. Nina: There. Welcome to the Dr. Nina Show here on LA Talk Radio. I am your host, Dr. Nina Savelle Rocklin and I am here to help you break free from body shame, binging, and diets that don't work. I want you to wake up and think about your day, not your diet.

If you love the show, please take a moment to rate it or review it on Apple Podcasts. I really would appreciate your support.

And if you'd like to join me today, the number is 323-203-0815. Once again, the column number 323-203-0815. I would love to hear what is on your mind and what is weighing on you. Because the real problem with binge eating, stress eating, or any kind of emotional eating, the real problem is not food. It is what's eating at you. 

What's the difference between Emotional Hunger vs Physical Hunger?

So I've gotten some questions about the difference between physical hunger and emotional hunger. So I wanted to start off with just giving you some information about that so that you can discern whether you are eating out of physical hunger or emotional hunger. 

Hi, Karlygash. I am speaking also live on Instagram at my new account, The Binge Cure. Yes, thank you, Karlygash, the period binge, period cure, the binge cure. And please join me there because I'm also live streaming as I do the show.

Signs of physical hunger

So physical hunger here are signs that you are physically hungry. You have a growling, gurgling stomach. Oh my gosh, that used to happen with me with my patients and it would be like an alien was about to burst out of my stomach. People would literally say are you hungry? 

Feeling lightheaded. And by the way that “alien out of a stomach thing” is, if you don't know it, it is a reference to Alien, the movie Alien, in case you think I'm weird. I mean, I am weird, but I'm not that weird. 

So, growling stomach, not an alien. Getting a headache.

Those are all physical symptoms, right? When physical hunger is physical, that you feel it in your body.

Signs of emotional hunger

Whereas emotional hunger is located more in your mind than in your body. 

So emotional hunger is when something looks good or sounds good or you want to calm down, or you want to feel better. So emotional hunger is anytime you are eating to change the way you emotionally feel.

So that is the difference between emotional hunger and physical hunger.

Eating for the wrong reasons

And by the way, a lot of people eat to feel more energized. So it isn't exactly emotional hunger, but it's eating for the wrong reasons. When you are tired, if you are eating to wake up… 

Oh, thank you, Karlygash. Hi, Josh. Hi, Christina. Hi, everyone on Instagram. Glad you found me.

If you're eating to wake up or to calm down, that means that you are using food to affect the way you physically feel. Right?

If you are tired and you're eating a lot of sugar to wake yourself up, well, you're giving yourself the wrong thing. 

What you need is to give yourself some rest, even a little 10-minute catnap, right? Even something as little as that can really help you as opposed to perking yourself up with sugar. 

If you are eating to calm down, and a lot of times, people eat very carby things because they're anxious and they just want to calm down. Then you have to find other ways to calm down.

One of the ways that I think is really effective is to calm down your body up.

I thank you, Karlygash. I'll be right with you. Sorry.

Sam, I have some mental block against looking at that. Okay, Karlygash, hold on.

When you tighten up all your muscles, the progressive muscle relaxation, and then you relax. That is an excellent way to calm your body down. 

Questions from Karlygash

Dr. Nina: Karlygash, Welcome to the show. And I'm sorry I didn't see Sam letting me know that you were there.

Karlygash: Hi, Dr. Nina. Good morning. No problem.

Dr. Nina: Hi, Karlygash. 

Karlygash: Do you hear me well? 

Dr. Nina: Ah, can you speak up just a little bit?

Karlygash: That's my max. Does it sound better? 

Dr. Nina: That's good. That's better. Yeah. 

Karlygash: Thank you. So good to see you, Dr. Nina. Oh my god, you just made my day. I was so like alone, grumpy, and I was like in this, you know, mental space where brain is so slimy covered with like spider webs and doesn't want to wake up and just very depressed and very sad. 

But then I turned on your Instagram Live show and just seeing you talking about differences about the hunger seeing your smiling face, cheerful, happy tone you know healthy actually it just. You just made me feel good. 

So what I want to discuss today are those days I'm doing my best to be in tune with my emotions. It's very challenging for me because I do have a tendency to escape them.

Like escape, or maybe numb them, avoid feelings, or like… I always… whenever I tell myself, “okay, what am I feeling right now?” Many times I get this answer from my inner critic, like, it's not important you know next time, or it's not next time, but it's not important what are your feeling you know like always like this not important and…

Dr. Nina: Karlygash, hold on. What do you notice about when you say “What am I feeling?”

Karlygash: You, yes. The word ‘You'.

Dr. Nina: You are feeling as not important, so that is always a sign for you that what… so when you Karlygash, speak to yourself from a second person place that is a sign that you are being harsh, critical, dismissive, or some identification with the family members that treated you that way.

And remember that come from an I place. So what am I feeling? What are you feeling?

Karlygash: I feel so angry, Dr. Nina. I mean, I'm angry at the situation. I'm very happy that I'm progressing and liberating and working with you, and now I'm more aware of what's going on around me inside me.

And like I'm still like very angry at the situation that I grew up among people who were unable to be in tune with their own emotions in the first place and then kinda modeled me the severe crooked way of being which doesn't work and it makes me suffer.

And I'm very happy that I'm getting aware, but right now I'm warning all these 37 years of wasted on this like suffering, and at the same time I noticed recently that, Dr. Nina, I just I… three days in a row I talked to three different people. 

So first day, my mom. Second day, my one of my like my exes. And yesterday like a new friend.

So mom and ex, just you know, I talked to them, and after talking to them, I was so devastated. Like, I didn't feel good. I couldn't work for three days I cannot work.

After talking to them. I didn't feel good. And my ex like he's a replica of my mom like he is exactly dismissing manipulative. So my head hurt. Dr. Nina,

Dr. Nina: I'm glad that you're recognizing that talking to these people was really… It sounds like very draining and upsetting to you.

Karlygash: Yeah. 

Dr. Nina: And, it also sounds like you're really there for other people. But if only you could be there for yourself and be as available to yourself as you are to others. What an amazing difference that would be. So what can you…

Karlygash: That's the thing that when try to like kind of be there for myself, because sometimes I do have this thought.

I have your voice in my head saying, “can you be attentive and kind to yourself the way you are to others?”

And I'm trying to be like, considerate of my, how I feel physically, how I feel emotionally, about my needs. 

And then I have this nasty voice and the feeling that it's kind of selfish.

I remember your book. I'm listening to it every day. Every day your book is on repeat, The Binge Cure. And I remember this chapter about selflessness and stop being selfish and self-care. And what I mean, when I'm trying to do self-care, I just feel guilty, you know, I care here.

Dr. Nina: Let me address that. Let me just say, for those of you who have not read the book or aren't familiar, I just want to recap what you're talking about.

What is Selfish, Selfless, Self-care

So selfish is when it's all about. It's all about me. I don't care about you. That's selfish.

Selfless is it's all about you. I don't care about me. You matter, I don't matter.

Both of these are extremes. And they're both. They're, they're not, they're not healthy ways of being in the world. So a lot of times, it feels like if you're not being self selfless, you're being selfish. 

But in the middle is self-care, which is sometimes it's about you, and sometimes it's about me, and that you matter too I matter too, and you matter. But sometimes you're going to choose your well-being over, giving, sacrificing yourself to make someone else happy. 

So I suspect that you feel guilty because for you, even though you intellectually know self-care exists, you feel if you're not being selfless, that you're being selfish. That you don't matter, that you have no rights, but it's all about taking care of other people.

Karlygash: Yeah, and then I have like, anger. You will not be happy that I get angry at myself for not being able to take care of myself, you know, in my own head. Not being able to be kind to myself.

Although I know I need to be compassionate to myself and say that it's not easy for me because nobody told me to do that. And of course, like automatically I have the staff reactions.

Dr. Nina: Karlygash, what is my VARY technique? And remember, you need to vary, the way that you respond to yourself. So what is VARY stand for? I know you know.

Karlygash: Okay, Validate Acknowledged Reassure Yourself.

Okay, and I figured out because I kind of was stuck. When I progress to the point where I do recognize my feelings, then I progress to the point that I need to be kinder to myself. And then I couldn't be kind to myself, and then I got angry with myself, this is where I stuck. Now I know…

Stop turning against yourself

Dr. Nina: So let me help. What you're talking about is turning against yourself. So rather than say, “Oh, I am really angry at the situation. And I felt so helpless. And I was born into a family that couldn't respond to me, appropriately take care of me.”

Then you get mad at yourself for not being able to change, and now the anger that really belongs to other people or situations gets turned on yourself that's attacking yourself. 

Then you just want to binge to get away from your own mean voice. Because when we attack ourselves, we make ourselves feel bad and want to… right… that's the boomerang effect that you might have heard me talk about.

When you take anger it goes outward, and you direct it towards yourself. 

And that is when you have to really be to yourself as you are to anybody else. You would never tell anybody else, “You have no right to feel that way. You should be mad at yourself because you know better and you can't make it happen.”

You would never say that. You have to say something along the lines of, “I am learning how to process this, and I am not going to attack myself. I am learning how to express myself. I am learning how to change just because I know it intellectually and rationally. Doesn't mean I'm going to be able to change right away.”

In fact, that is one of the hardest things to deal with when you're in treatment, or reading the book, or, you know, anything else is when you know what you know, and you are enlightened, and you get it logically. But it doesn't yet resonate psychologically. 

When what you know and what you feel are totally misaligned. But that's where it takes practice. And you're not giving yourself the room to learn this new way. You keep interrupting the learning by attacking yourself.

Knowing is different from doing

Karlygash: Thank you, Dr. Nina. I understood my next step. So when I get stuck and get angry with myself not being able to be kind, I will just use VARY, and I will progress further. Because, yes, like you said, just knowing intellectually, that I need to be kind to myself is one thing. 

Now I need to kind of deepen it into my psyche and make it feel, which is totally different experience just from knowing. You know I need to make it sink into my feeling, understanding, knowing and it may takes time.

Like you said, I will keep reminding myself that it's a process. Because see, I get angry, because in my family, when I was a kid, nobody gave me time to learn. 

I was given a task. And I was expected to perform at the most excellent level, not even that, better than others, right away. So I never had time to actually sit and develop the skill.

That's why I treat myself this way sometimes with critical words, but just after talking to them, I understand that, hey, that's normal. I'm really building something which never existed in my brain in my psyche. 

It's a new thing. It's a challenging thing. It's not something you write in the book, and you say, “oh, there's a mistake.” It's something non-tangible.

It's challenging to navigate it in the first place. So yeah, maybe just giving myself time without rushing myself, and that could…

I like it. I can. I think I can. I can do it. I think I can progress with this kind of approach.

Dr. Nina: I know you can. I have total faith and belief in you. I know you can, Karlygash. And what you just did was you just discovered some self-compassion. So…

Karlygash: Thank you, Dr. Nina. I like it.

Dr. Nina: Yes, it feels much better than attacking yourself and being mad at yourself.

Karlygash: Yeah, exactly. It feels way better when you're in.

Dr. Nina: Yes. So practice makes progress. Okay, just keep remembering what you just said. “I'm going to give myself permission to learn this new way of being. I'm learning something. And it's not going to be overnight, and I'm going to keep practicing it.” And you'll see the change.

Karlygash: Thank you so much for the support Dr. Nina and for your kind voice, which models in you attitude to myself in my head. I really appreciate it.

And I'm so happy that you're out there. And I'm very grateful for all the help and generous love, and tools you're giving to us. It's priceless. And I'm very grateful. Thank you so so much.

Dr. Nina: Oh, thank you, Karlygash, that made me happy. So happy. Let me know how it goes. Okay, thank you, Karlygash, be curious, not critical. Okay.

Karlygash: I will. Thank you, Dr. Nina. Thank you.

Dr. Nina: Bye, bye.

Oh, I just want to say, in relation to what you know, and what you feel being out of sync. One of the metaphors I'd like to use is that of learning to play an instrument. 

So when you learn to play the piano, you know, what finger goes with what key. And you know, or you learn what reading music. What that you're reading goes to which finger to which key. You know it?

But that does not translate into just sitting down at the piano and playing. No, it does not. You have to practice and practice and practice. 

And if you discourage yourself by saying, What's the matter with you, you know which keys go with which fingers? Why aren't you playing?

Well, you're never going to learn to play the piano because you're going to feel so discouraged and so bad and so terrible. But if you say okay, I'm just going to keep going—

New caller. Hold on.

I'm just going to keep going. You will absolutely learn with practice how to play better and better and better. And then one day it becomes second nature. 

Okay. Hi new caller. What's your name? Who is this?

Sarah: This is Sarah. 

Dr. Nina: Sarah? 

Sarah: Yes

Dr. Nina: Welcome to the show. Sarah, how can I help you? What's going on?

Sarah: Thank you. First, I just want to thank you for your book. I finished reading it about three weeks ago and already lost 10 pounds already. So. And I didn't even realize I had emotional eating until I read your book. So you did a great job on putting the two together. So I just wanted to thank you for that.

Dr. Nina: You are so welcome. And I am delighted to hear that. This that my book brought you not only insight but clearly some changes. So wonderful. Yay.

Sarah: Yeah, first time in a long time, I felt that way. So yes, thank you. And as I was reading your book, though, I was going, you know, not even realizing I had emotional eating. And I started. I like to have a whole page of stuff from my past and current that I think is related to food or how I talk. 

I'd like your section on how you should talk to other people to emphasize with empathy or whatever. So right now, I'm doing it while I'm, if I want to overeat or if I want to binge. But on this oldest stuff that I figured out, I still have to work through. Do I do that with your deal was the same thing, which was like validate acknowledge, you know, that type of thing? Or should I wait until I have another issue and then deal with them, then?

Dr. Nina: I think it's always good to heal the past so that it doesn't come up and create another issue. And one of the things when you when we talk about the past is it's not so much about the past. People often say, Oh, but I was in therapy for 20 years talking about the past, and nothing ever changed. And my answer is, of course, it didn't change because you're not; you're not recognizing how your past is influencing your present. 

That's the missing piece, usually. So keep in mind, as you process what happened, how did you internalize it? You, maybe you just heard Karlygash's call, in which the way she talks to herself in second person is very reminiscent of her mean family. So she's not living with her mean family. She's in a different country, but her mean family is with her in her mind. 

Sarah: I see

Dr. Nina: And so, yes, so recognizing, you know, how have you been affected by the past is so crucial to healing.

Sarah:  In my family, we always dusted or didn't, or I showed no emotion at all.

Dr. Nina: Yeah, yeah. So my way, I deal with emotion. Pardon, sorry, I cut you off.

Sarah:  And so with the way I handle it is different than one who is critical. Or their parents were critical or hard on yourself because I don't feel I'm that way.

Dr. Nina: So for you, okay, so Karlygash's example was that she was criticized and judged and all of that, so she has become critical and judgmental of herself. You didn't have that. You just had the message of, if you feel something, just stuff it down literally or figuratively, or don't feel it at all. Is that is that.

Sarah: Right!

Dr. Nina: And therefore, what happens to those feelings? And that's where we can get so good at dissociating from our experience that we don't even know we're feeling something. That's why I created my food mood formula in the book to help you recognize what's going on inside.

You might not realize you're angry because you're eating, you know, a bunch of tortilla chips. You might not realize that you're sad or you need comfort because you're if you're eating ice cream; that's a sign and so forth. So what comes to mind about that?

Sarah:  And I definitely eat for comfort and also for boredom. And it seemed, and I think it's just because I'm not dealing with it, you know, I'm just, I'm just there, and that always bugged me because I knew something was causing this. I just didn't know what was causing it, you know, and I think it's not dealing with my feelings. But I'm not sure how to work with these old feelings, you know? To do it now, you know, what process do I need to follow to do that?

Dr. Nina: Okay, so I want you, so first you use the food mood formula to figure out what are the feelings or conflicts or needs that you are dealing with? So when you say you're bored, maybe you're bored. The answer to boredom is to do something. Often we think we're bored when we're really feeling lonely or empty. 

So the first step is use the food mood formula to figure out what is going on within and then go to page 45 of the book, which has a bunch of prompts for many different emotions. And they go from sort of benign to more intense for each of the emotion and finish the sentences. 

Because that because we have to start expressing. Yeah, so first, you identify it, and then you express it. I'm, I'm on page 45. So, for example, what do you think you let's say, sadness, I'm like, you would finish the sentence and say, I'm unhappy? How would you finish that? If you feel comfortable.

Sarah: I, okay, I'm unhappy because I'm trying to use a good example. I don't have one in mind. Sorry.

Dr. Nina: It's ok. I'm sad. 

Sarah: I'm unhappy when I was ignored by my father. You know, that really bothered me when I was a kid. He didn't know how to relate to me, he related to my brothers, but not to me. So I never got the attention from him that I deserve to this is one of those opens that you can tell I’m getting emotional already because I never dealt with that in my past. 

Dr. Nina: Of course. 

Sarah:  It must be better if I'm feeling emotional about it, right?

Dr. Nina: Yes, of course. When we grow up, especially when we see that some siblings like maybe that it's a sign of gender preference, or whatever, or maybe your father could just relate better to your brothers. 

Sarah:  Yeah, I think that was it, yeah.

Dr. Nina: As kids, we don't, we don't say, Oh, my dad has some gender preference. And he can relate better to my brothers because he can find himself in them. And that's why he's treating them in a way that is different than he's treating me. 

We're incapable of thinking that. What we say is they're getting something I'm not getting, and then we make an interpretation. What does that mean about me? I must not be good enough. I must be too much I must be or whatever the interpretation is. It's which is painful. It's hurtful.

Sarah: Yeah. Yeah. 

Dr. Nina: Yeah. And is there anything?

Dr. Nina: Oh, go on.

Sarah: So, just saying it out loud and acknowledging it? And then I think you're, I think on my look, I have a little card in front of you, too, that I put when I start picking things that when you reassure and give yourself sweet words, is that how you're because I'm not used to dealing with emotion. So it's not how I'm dealing with it.

Dr. Nina: So first things, first, you express it in what you just expressed, you know, you express with feeling, I mean, I can feel how painful that was, I can feel it. Right, how I mean, my heart goes out to you. And you could feel it too. So you just expressed sadness and some unhappiness about this treatment. 

Then now, the mistake that most people make is they go right to the reassurance. Oh, but it didn't mean he didn't love you. Oh, but you're lovable. Oh, but, and they missed the most important part of the VARY technique, which is the way you to respond, which is to validate and acknowledge. It really should be acknowledged and validated. But that doesn't quite got work with the acronym, but they kind of go together. 

So you acknowledge and validate? Yes, of course, that's hurtful. Who wouldn't be hurt? Whose feelings wouldn't be hurt? If her father was giving her brother's attention, wasn't giving her attention? Anyone in that position would be hurt? That's very painful. Of course, it is. And

Sarah: Okay. That's just that that's the stuff I'm skipping or not spending enough time on. Made sure I do that. Is that correct?

Dr. Nina: Exactly. And you reassure yourself, but it didn't mean anything about me. But it was about him being able to relate better to my brothers. And you know I'm a lovable, you know, likable wonderful person. It didn't doesn't reflect who I am. The way my father treated me does not reflect that my lack of love ability or likeability you know that, but first, you've got to really honor. Oh, Ouch, that hurt. Of course, it hurt.

Sarah: Yeah, and I guess I wasn't doing that at all. So I will start doing that and really feel it. You know, I learned how to do such thing.

Dr. Nina: Yesh, you learn, look, you learn not to feel it. But we don't.

Sarah: Yeah. I learned not to feel it. That is definitely an issue with my family.

Dr. Nina: And now you're learning to feel it. Because what you feel, you will heal. And when you are healed, that you're not walking around with that open wound within that food takes you away from?

Sarah: Yeah, okay. Okay, well, thank you.

Dr. Nina: Oh, thank you so much for calling. Please call back and let me know how you're doing. And if you want to practice some of that, you know, express it, expression of feelings or if you have any more insights, I welcome them. I'm so glad you called.

Sarah: Thank you. And thank you for writing the book and helping us do this. I actually went to several architect colleges in the last five or 10 years, and they never were able to tie. They just say feel things. And I didn't know how to do that. And so it didn't really work. But with all your examples in the book and tying it to food, which I never did before, it just, I mean, I could write a whole piece on my feelings. And, and I really appreciate that, because you really go a step further. So thank you.

Dr. Nina: Thank you, Sarah. Take good care. You stay curious, not critical as well. And please, please call me back and let me know how you're doing.

Sarah: Okay, great. 

Dr. Nina: Okay, bye-bye.

Sarah: Thank you. Bye-bye.

Dr. Nina: Oh, well, didn't that just make day. Josh is saying what. And by the way, you know, what Sarah is going through is so common because we live. Hold on, Josh, I'm going to get to your question. We live in a world that says don't feel your feelings. I mean, this is a cultural and societal problem. 

If you're angry, oh, you're a person who bad. Not, you're angry because something's happening in your life. If you're sad, and you're depressed, you're depressed, you got to take a pill. Some people are depressed, it is true. But sadness is also part of the normal human experience. If you're anxious, there's a pill for that too. But we just don't allow ourselves to as a society, as a culture to have responses to situations. 

Because we're told we're weak if we feel and express our feelings, and we're strong if we don't. So what the heck happens to our feelings? We suppress them, stuff them, starve them. You know, my, the book I wrote with my mentor, beyond the primal addiction, talks about all these addictions, and I don't like the word addiction, but that's the name of the book. That there are all ways of coping and distracting. 

Whether it's whether you're distracting with food, or sex, or gambling, or shopping, or the internet, or whatever, these are all things we talked about in the book. That these are all ways of coping with our inner world, and we got to get more interested in our inner world and not make it so scary. 

Feelings are just reactions to situations. They are not character flaws. And by the way, it takes a lot of strength to feel them. So whoever came up with the idea that you're weak if you feel your feelings and strong if you don't, it's the opposite. It takes strength to work through uncomfortable reactions and emotions. 

Okay, Josh, what are we starving ourselves of and why? Well, I think that is a question that is really only to be answered on an individual basis. You know, because people are starved of different things for different reasons, just as people turn to food for different reasons. People ask me all the time, what is it like to? Oh, did someone just call me, and I didn't see it. It happened again. I have a mental block. Caller, if you're there. I don't know if that was.

Christina: Hi, this is Christina.

Dr. Nina: Hi, Christina. I am so sorry.

Christina: It's okay. I know you mentioned to Karlygash, it happened. Thank you for catching that.

Dr. Nina: Welcome back to the show.

Christina: Thank you. And I just wanted to thank Karlygash and Sarah for calling in because I am right there with them in terms of I’m learning so much. And actually, this is a call just to fill you in on where I'm at. And just to let you know, I am employing a lot of your techniques. And I have been doing it for a few years. But sometimes, it all just sort of come together.

And it's like this really works. I'm shocked with how well it works. And I know Sarah mentioned her weight loss. And I've had so many things happen over the past few years health-related, deaths in the family. And I've stayed the same way. And that is amazing. And it's fantastic. And I'm not engaging in any harmful food behaviors. And I'm eating when I'm hungry, and I'm stopping when I'm full. And I just wanted to say thank you.

I don't know if the audience knows but you know, over the past few years, I had everything from my dad passed away, my dog passed away. I had a huge car accident with head and neck injury and chronic pain, and so many doctors and neurologists and physical therapists, you know, I was on an antidepressant for a short time. I've been off of it for months now. It turns out that was actually adding to my chronic pain.

So when I stopped it, the chronic pain, myofascial pain syndrome, stopped. Anyway, so many things have been going on. But I just wanted to say I employed the really positive self-talk, just catching myself when I'm noticing how damaging my inner self was being to me and by trying to speak in the first person and just being curious. And I love the VARy the validate, acknowledge, reassure yourself, you can see I've been, you know, using a lot of these things.

And just speaking with people and talking about my emotions, and I just appreciated the last call, which really went into how to work through emotions because you hear that term constantly. And people, at least for me, I'm like, what do you do? How do you do that? And you know, I started with your group years ago, but I have just been following along and just taking, realizing, like you said, it takes a long time to learn new skills.

And if it helps, once, that was great, that opened the door, I'm like, Oh, wow, I felt this feeling, and I didn't go to the food. Anyway, this was not meant to be a monologue, but I wanted to just check in and say, even my husband has noticed. I used to in the past not allow certain foods in the house because I was afraid I would binge on them or go to them. He's like, you let me get anything that I want.

And like our, our kitchen is full of food, all different types and its food because I go now if I find myself wanting to reach for something, and I'll finish, I go to oh, what's really going on? What's this emotion that I'm feeling? And sometimes, it does start with a physical issue. And then I'm like, Okay, wait a minute. It's not the stomach ache. What might be causing the stomach ache? That is an emotion anyway.

Wow, I just had to check-in. I know I have a lot more to learn. But it has been a miracle as an athlete to have had all of these chronic issues, and I couldn't work out, and I've maintained a healthy, great weight. And like I said, even before, I would be like that's not a great, it's a great weight. It's a great size. It's. So thank you, I don't have too many questions for you. But I just wanted to say thank you.

Dr. Nina: Well, Christina, first of all, don't apologize for sharing your success and how you've overcome your challenges. Never apologize for that. That was not a monologue. That was you sharing and inspiring other people, making me super happy. But inspiring other people because, you know, when people hear about other people's success and other people's challenges, it is inspiring. It is helpful.

So by sharing your story and all that you've overcome and all that you've realized, when you just said you can keep whatever food in the house, it doesn't matter. I am sure there are people out there going. I can't even imagine such a thing. When I was in my full-on, you know, eating disorder. Before I got help, I never talked about my eating disorder, but it cured it. Liberated me from it. I couldn't. I couldn't imagine it; what something with a carb in the house no impossible?

Well, you when you share that, you give hope to other people. And best part of it is how you're more interested in yourself, how you're taking your own side, and how you're really clearly encouraging yourself. And that's just so beautiful. And it's so, so inspiring and makes me so happy to hear.

Christina: Thank you. And yes, I just, the changes are small, yet massive. And I was one of those people. I was doing a while back quite a while back that intermittent fasting. And I simply flipped to I'm going to eat when I'm hungry. And even my husband noticed that it might have been 10:30 in the morning. Like it's nice to have a schedule. And I normally eat very regularly.

But there are some days, sometimes in a month, whatever it may be, I'm hungry, I need more calories for whatever reason. So, that intermittent fasting has gone bye-bye because I feel I absolutely deserve food. And I eat when I'm hungry. And like I said, it's normally on a schedule, but it's okay if I'm hungry at a random time because what I found was, I'll eat and guess what I don't need to overeat. And I don't need to undereat because that's the time to eat.

So it's giving my permission. My self-permission to live and, God forbid, to enjoy food, to enjoy it. Not just like you said, the fuel. It's an enjoyable thing. My husband and I think I mentioned at the other day we went had our 19th anniversary, we went and enjoyed a wonderful meal with exactly what I wanted at a Mexican restaurant. And it was non-anxiety-provoking and just fun and enlightening. And I didn't worry about calories, or my body can take care of itself and knows exactly what to do.

We have the best machines in the world. And it took me really a long time to reprogram. I think what I learned, you know, things that were damaging that I learned in my family, like with Sarah and those past traumas to overcome, and it's okay, if they pop up again, those feelings or those situations, it takes as long as it takes to work through whatever situation.

Dr. Nina: We, and  the situations may not change, but we can absolutely change the way we relate to and respond to those situations.

Christina: 100% Yeah, yeah, so thank you. And I would love to call back again. I know life will happen, and challenges will happen. But thank you for this great tool belt, and I hope to call you back soon.

Dr. Nina: I look forward to talking with you. And I'm so glad you called. And I'm sorry that I'm going to train myself. Actually, look at when Sam is something caller is waiting. I'm sorry, I was talking on and on and on and didn't see that. But I'm so glad that

Christina: No, it was great because you're on Instagram. So you saw it there. So, that was wonderful.

Dr. Nina: Exactly. Thank you, Christina.

Christina: Thank you, Dr. Nina. Talk to you soon. Love your show. I will write you a review as you mentioned at the beginning.

Dr. Nina: Oh, thank you

Christina: So yes, everyone write positive reviews for Dr. Nina. She has life-changing tools. Thank you. Take care.

Dr. Nina: Thank you, Christina. Bye-bye, bye. Oh, I just feel so blessed today that people are calling and really sharing their shifts and the changes that they're making in their lives. By the way, Christina is a member of the Dr. Nina's Food for Thought community group on Facebook. So if you would like to be in that group, I think we've got 800 I think we're. I think we're like around 900 people all over the world.

Please join just search for Dr. Nina's Food for Thought community, outsmart emotional eating, and you can join other people who are who are working on this who are interested in changing their way of being with themselves and therefore with food because remember, eating is the eating or binging or stressing or any kind of emotional eating is the solution to the problem. It is not the problem.

And as Sarah was saying, how do you know the problem if you get so good at not figuring out that you're feeling anything. And again, go to my food mood formula. I'm about to. I'm about to tell you a recap it. For those of you who know it, you cannot hear it enough. And for those of you who don't know it, it's going to help you a lot. And if you want an actual guidebook, you can go to my website, drninainc.com. And sign up and get a copy of the food mood formula Workbook.

So basically, it's this if you don't know what you're feeling, but you're turning to ice cream to resolve something emotional. I'm not talking about, oh, it's dessert, let's have ice cream. I'm talking about, I'm devastated with something what's in the freezer, and you know, you can't stop eating it. That's a sign of needing comfort.

And so then you have to learn ways of comforting yourself with words, instead of comfort food, even though we kind of think of comfort food is more like you know, pastas and stuff like that. Those filling foods, whether it's pasta, or pizza, or cake or muffins, and things like that those are associated with filling a void, and filling a void means that there is there you're symbolically filling a void. There's something missing in your life.

Maybe you're lonely. Maybe there's something else that's unfulfilling. Even look at the language, you we're unfulfilled, it sort of speaks in a roundabout, indirect way to full, we're not being filled, unfulfilled. And that is goes to like our appetites, right? So maybe you have an appetite for life, and it's not being some area of your life, and it's not being rewarded. What are those? What are the voids in your life? Look at that and find new ways to meet those.

And anything crunchy, whether it's chips, or pretzels or just anything with that bite that is associated with anger. And again, it's not, hey, I'm going to have Doritos with my sandwich, it's I'm going to, I'm going to eat that. So that's because I know I can't stop eating the family size bag of Doritos, right? That's what I'm talking about.

Then you want to look at, well, what in your life is making you angry. And instead of turning that anger against yourself for eating, or instead of symbolically biting down on crunchy foods, express it again, page 45. Express your feelings once you identify the feelings to the food mood formula, express them, speak them, and then use the VARY technique then validate. Yeah, of course, I'm mad. This is going on. Who else wouldn't be mad in my situation? But I'm not going to feel this way forever, etc.

So those are some, those are some tips for you to help identify what's going on with the food mood formula. And then the next step, of course, is to express it, to speak it. And by the way, I am not talking about speaking it like this. I'm very angry because of this. That is thinking your anger or I'm very sad about that. That is thinking your anger. I mean, thinking your sadness, thinking your emotions, you can't think away your feelings. You can only feel them. So anger is I'm so mad about the.

Or sad is, oh my god, I'm so sad about this, right? When you actually express it. When you express it, you get rid of it. What we feel it sounds so counterintuitive that the only way to get rid of feelings is to actually feel them. How do we do that? We express them with words. And then we respond to ourselves. A lot of people say well, I know I've got to sit in my feelings. Oh no. That sounds horrible. Who wants to sit in your feelings? Oh, like a really tepid bath. The sounds awful.

No, you do not have to sit in your feelings. You do not have to sit with your feelings. Sitting with your feelings is horrible. And you want to avoid sitting with your feelings. Of course you do. Got to express the feelings. Express them, speak them, put words to them. And then respond to yourself. And that feels a lot better when you're just left with speaking all this anger. You just kind of feel oh, then you have to think that's why the responding part is really important.

Yeah, of course, I'm mad. Who wouldn't be mad? Right. So and the Val, as Sarah was saying, she's missing the validating and acknowledging part. We tend to dismiss by trying to help, but we end up dismissing, Oh, it's okay. It's not that bad. It could be worse. You're good. You're no; it's hell yeah, you feel that? Of course, you do. That's the part that's missing. And if you practice that, you're going to feel a lot better.

Oh my gosh, that is our show for today that went really fast. Thank you so much for joining me here on the Dr. Nina show on LA Talk Radio and on Instagram. If you again if you would like to join the food for thought community, head over to Facebook and join us, and you'll find a very welcoming community full of people who get it and who are trying to create the same changes that you are. I'm there to answer you and respond, and occasionally I even do lives there. So check it out.

And again, if you like the show, as Christina said, Christina, thank you so much. Please go to Apple podcasts and leave a rating or a review for the Dr. Nina show on La Talk Radio. Thank you. Be curious, not critical. Be kind to yourselves. You deserve it, and here's a big hug from me. Have a great week, and I will see you next week. Bye for now.