Diet mood swings--some women experience it, some women don’t. According to research, they usually happen to women who have unhealthy eating behaviors but are still concerned with their diet and self-image.

The study, featured, had researchers give 131 women hand-held computers to take with them throughout the duration of the experiment. These women do not have eating disorders, but are conscious of their body, weight, and eating habits. The machine prompted them to answer questions about their mood and how they have been eating at certain times of the day.

The participants were found to have mood changes prior to unhealthy or uncontrolled eating. Positive mood did not change before or after any eating behaviors noted by the researchers. However, negative moods became worse after periods of unhealthy eating.

Keep the negativity in check by stopping bingeing and unhealthy eating. Here are a few tips that can help:

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  • Learn how to portion your food. Instead of finishing an entire pint of ice cream, just get a small scoop, and put the rest back in the freezer.
  • Eat on time. Instead of starving yourself and breaking your diet once you see a fat, juicy steak, keep yourself full by snacking on fruits and vegetables, eating your breakfast, lunch, and dinner on time, and not skipping meals.
  • Avoid distractions while you’re eating. Sometimes, you tend to consume more when having dinner while watching TV. Be conscious of the time and stop eating after, say, 30 minutes. Then give yourself a few moments to digest. You’ll notice that you’re actually already full.
  • Knowwhen you’re really hungry or you’re just craving. Being hungry makes you want to eat anything, while craving only gives you the urge to eat specific things. If you hear yourself say, "I think I’m hungry. I want a brownie/bag of chips/lechon," stop yourself. You don’t need really to eat--your brain just likes the idea having a certain taste in your mouth.

Of course, it’s okay to occasionally indulge once in a while but just remember: as with everything else, moderation is the key. This way, you won’t feel guilty about giving yourself a break.

(Photo by Matt Gibson via Flickr Creative Commons)

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