How the Pixar Movie “Inside Out” is the Key to Beating Emotional Eating

emotional eating May 22, 2018

Inside out is an extraordinarily cool movie from Pixar and Disney about the different and competing emotions going on in the head of a girl named Riley.


The movie came out in 2015, so I’m assuming it’s safe to offer major spoilers now. If you haven’t seen it, and don’t want to spoil it — go watch it right now and then come back.

Hard Life Change, Different Emotions

Riley’s parents move, and she has a lot of different feelings about the move. The central struggle of the movie — which isn’t apparent at first (this is the spoiler) is that “Joy” thinks she’s supposed to be running the show.

Essentially, the issue is that Joy is considered the “right” emotion, and every other emotion is considered to be an emergency to be fixed.


This is actually the central problem of emotional eating — that we think we’re supposed to be happy all of the time.

Don’t get me wrong, we...

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New Podcast! Ending Stressful Eating

Uncategorized Apr 24, 2018

Maria of No Control Z and I recorded a podcast recently which might just be my favorite episode, ever! Maybe it's because she had prearranged such insightful questions, or because she's naturally amazing to make conversation with, or perhaps because she and I both have been down the road of troubled eating. Anyhow, I bet you'll like it and we got SO many great topics in there I can't believe it all fit in less than an hour?!

Click here to listen!

Here's what you can get in this free episode:

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The Motivation Superstition

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2018

The fundamental lie (superstition) of working out and eating well is that motivation comes before action.

Lets Take A Look At The Reality:

  • Jessica doesn’t want to work out today. She feels like skipping it. She goes and works out anyway. 15 minutes into the workout, she starts to feel “motivated.”
  • Sarah is has been planning and cooking healthy meals now for 10 weeks, and seen results, but is just so totally over doing it. She does not want to cook this week. She goes to the store to buy the food she’d planned anyway, by the time she gets home, she feels “motivated.”
  • Joe has been doing the same workout program for four months (it’s a six month program). He’s bored, and wants to do something else. He goes to the gym, and does his program anyway. By the end of month five, he’s “motivated” to finish all six months.
  • Melissa is so frustrated with getting slow and steady results using food habits. She wants to jump on a new...
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Eating Out is Simple

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2018

Our clients are often shocked to find out that they can totally eat at Chipotle or Garbanzo as often as they want.

But if you look at the picture above, it’s really pretty simple:

  • 1/2 plate veggies
  • 1/4 plate protein
  • 1/4 plate carbs
  • Sauce

That meal is a meal from Garbanzo, ordered exactly like this:

  • No hummus or pita
  • Half the plate lettuce
  • Rice
  • Double chicken
  • Seasonal vegetables on the lettuce
  • Cilantro sauce

It’s a pretty delicious and tasty meal! It's available almost anywhere, quick, and reasonably priced.

Of course, you get to pick whichever carbohydrate you like. You might want to do the pita instead of the rice. Awesome, rock out with your pita. You get to choose.

You can eat anywhere you want. It’s just a matter of noticing that places will mostly serve you about five portions of carbohydrates, and somewhere between half a portion and a full portion of protein.

The most important thing is to order one portion of carbohydrates, and then fill in the...

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What If Losing Weight In 2017 Doesn't Make You Feel Any Happier Or Better About Yourself?

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2018

I’m going to offer a radical perspective. It’s an alternate perspective from how most people are wired. I’m not saying it’s the ultimate truth, but it can be a really useful and effective perspective on your weight loss journey.

The radical, alternate perspective: Losing weight won’t make you happier. Losing weight won’t make you feel better about yourself.

I was listening to a podcast with Joanne Dahl, PhD, talking about how looking at neurology, we know humans have five times more negative thoughts than they do positive thoughts. That means you’re probably going to have some negative thoughts about yourself, from time to time, for the rest of your life.

Most of the really good personal trainers I know really doubt their abilities a lot of the time. I’ve met people who’ve gotten PhDs to try to escape feeling like they aren’t good enough, and they still feel like they aren’t good enough. For those curious,...

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How to Stop Wrecking Your Diet Every Evening

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2018

For a lot of people, from the instant the alarm sounds in the morning, we’re on a schedule. We have to be in the shower by a certain time, out the door at a certain time, get to our desk at a certain time, and that’s just the beginning.

Opening our calendars we peer at the day ahead and it looks like…. more things on a schedule. Meetings, phone calls, picking up kids and even stuff we might want to do like get to a hairstylist all happen in their respective time slots.

Into the evening hours, tasks continue. You might be picking up or dropping off kids, figuring out the grocery situation, or seeing if you can get a workout in. The dog needs a walk, and that stack of mail that came today needs to be looked through.

While this organization of our day can go a long way to helping us be productive, many people look forward to the end of their day when there is nothing on the agenda. Usually, dinner is the last “event”, and after that, it’s just...

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From Binge Eating To Weight Loss

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2018

As nutrition coaches, people come to us when they are stuck and not making progress. One particularly challenging and recurring example of this is people who struggle with binge eating and excess weight, both of which they would like to lose for good. It's not hard to see that binge eating (consuming objectively large amounts of food in a single sitting while feeling out of control) is counterproductive to weight loss. What's harder to see is why someone in this situation actually shouldn't try to work on both goals at the same time.

Working on weight loss is counterproductive to binge eating recovery, however, binge eating recovery is the single best step toward attaining a healthy weight.

Is that a mind-bender or what? Let's explore.

Friends and families of our clients who fit this profile often know them as the Super Healthy Eaters, who never seem to eat any sweets, or maybe they are the strict Paleo dieter in their circle of friends. They may have "always been on a diet." But...

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Meal Planning As Simple As 1-2-3-4-5

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2018

Meal planning is much simpler than most people have been led to believe. Diets deliberately complicate things for marketing purposes. As long as there is a “magic food” or “secret macro ratio” that makes it work, you’ll always need to buy another diet.

There is no secret. It’s just the basics of feeling full, repeated over and over again. Let’s take a look:

The Four Elements Of Fullness:

  1. Protein
  2. Vegetables
  3. Carbohydrates
  4. Fat

Plus, the master element of consistency and success: Taste/Flavor profile

News and diets live on crying wolf about the evil magic of carbohydrates, or protein, or fat, or whatever. In truth, people are going to feel the most full with some of all of the above in each meal.

People get freaked out about carbohydrates, like “I gain weight any time I even see carbs!!!!” This is false. Most people eat five servings of carbohydrates at a meal. Have you ever tried one serving? 

  • Why it can work to cut out...
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How To Fix Emotional Eating With Self Care

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2018

There’s something we’ve noticed a lot of the time when people have trouble with emotional eating or stress eating: Eating is the only thing they do to treat themselves.

Problems, Stress, or Emotion

When people try to work with emotional eating, they assume that the treats they eat are the problem. They remove treats and then try to white-knuckle not eating them when they have stressful or emotional days. Eventually, something happens, and they can’t hold on any longer — they break down and have even more treats. Then they feel terrible.

Or, sometimes they assume that their emotions are the problem. It’s easy to think “If I didn’t have these emotions, I wouldn’t have an issue!” The assumption is that what you need is a life without problems or stress. The only problem here is that most of the clients we see actually have really stressful lives. They have important jobs or families or even charities they sit on boards for, they...

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Is Your Weight Loss Plan Making You An A-Hole?

Uncategorized Apr 23, 2018

A Good Metaphor for a Weight Loss Plan is A College Graduation Plan

If it takes 120 credits to graduate, and you take 15 credits per semester, you will graduate in 8 semesters or 4 years. Sometimes you can’t get classes or whatever, and it takes 5 years.

On the other hand, let's say you really want to graduate. You’re like so motivated. Plus, you haven’t gone to college in a while, so you figure you need to make up for it. So you take 120 credits in one semester. You get burnt out, and you fail everything. You’re so demoralized you don’t even really try for another year or two. That would be how you do college like an a-hole.

Most people approach college the first way: 15 credits per semester. This appeals to your values, like moderation, patience, consistency, intentionality, and planning. It’s the consistency of doing the 15 credit work, day in and day out, that gets you to graduation. Plus, the practice of moderation, patience, consistency,...

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