Montel Reveals 4 Emotional Eating Habits and Cures on The Dr. Oz Show
On a recent episode of The Dr. Oz Show, special guest Montel Williams reveals for the first time in public that he suffers from an emotional eating disorder linked to depression that he says for many people like him has to do with self-body image.
Montel gives a frank and personal discussion about while in the military at age 19 he had been misdiagnosed with male breast cancer and subsequently underwent a massive radical mastectomy that left his chest horribly scarred. It wasn’t until after the mastectomy that it was determined that he did not have cancer; but rather, had a type of gynecomastia resulting from exercise and a tear to his pectoral muscles.
The mastectomy led to years of emotional turmoil that affected how he viewed (and believed how that others would view) his body. The long-term result led to binge eating during times of emotional stress that he went to great lengths to hide from his family and friends—even while putting on his game face as a health advisor and author of books on physical fitness. It wasn’t until last year just before appearing on an earlier episode of The Dr. Oz Show that Montel came to realize that he had an emotional eating problem and needed to do something about it.
As a result, Montel has overcame his emotional eating and is bringing to the public his “Miracle Plan” for combating emotional eating. Part of his plan revealed on The Dr. Oz Show involves recognizing the 4 emotional eating habits and following his 4 food fixes when emotions begin to take control of your eating.
A summary of the 4 habits and 4 cures are as follows:
Boredom: the number one reason for emotional eating
According to a survey conducted by Montel, boredom is the number one reason why people turn to emotional eating and tells us that boredom can be brought on by decreased levels of dopamine—a neurotransmitter involved in feelings of pleasure and well-being in the brain.
When feeling bored and finding yourself snacking for pleasure rather than hunger, Montel advises viewers to try his “Never-be-Bored Kola Nut Infusion”—a liquid extract of the Kola nut with added caffeine and phytonutrients that Montel says will provide you with an energy boost to get over your feelings of boredom. While the extract can be taken straight, adding a few drops to a slice of watermelon will make it more palatable.
Anger: the number two reason for emotional eating
Anger causes the body to increase its adrenaline production and as a result directs a person to take his or her frustration out on food. To combat the adrenaline burst, Montel says that protein is needed to counteract the hormone and advises viewers to turn to high protein, low fat foods such as hemp and chia seeds in his “Anger-Soothing Seed Combo.”
The hemp and chia seeds not only provide protein and fiber, but antioxidants as well that may lower blood pressure associated with an adrenaline burst. The hemp and chia seeds can be either sprinkled over and eaten with a salad, or added to a drink.
Stress: the number three reason for emotional eating
Experiencing stress causes the release of the stress hormone cortisol, which can not only make a person feel anxious and turn to food for relief, but also adversely affect the heart and other organs.
When Montel feels stressed he turns to his “Chilled Chocolate Goji Berry Blast” that consists of 3 tablespoons of raw chocolate, 4 tablespoons of ground Goji Berry and 1 can of cold coconut water.
Goji berries grow on an evergreen shrub found in temperate and subtropical regions in China, Mongolia and in Tibet and look like shriveled red raisins. Goji berries are rich in antioxidants—particularly carotenoids such as beta-carotene and zeaxanthin—and are claimed by Chinese physicians to combat many illnesses and promote longevity.
An added benefit of Montel’s “Chilled Chocolate Goji Berry Blast” is that he claims that coconut water is a great wrinkle remover that works by plumping up the skin around the eyes.
Sadness: the number four reason for emotional eating
Diagnosed for years with depression, feelings of sadness and hopelessness are particularly strong causes of Montel’s past history of emotional eating. Sadness results in decreased levels of serotonin—a neurotransmitter that the brain needs to keep a person’s mood elevated. Low levels of serotonin lead to increased snacking behaviors for instant gratification, but often at the cost of added pounds from unhealthy food choices.
To combat the emotional need for food when sad, Montel endorses a product called “Happy Hunger Chews” by a company called Re-Body that Montel is associated with. Not only does the “Happy Hunger Chews” snack provide a healthier snacking alternative, but its key ingredient is a form of saffron called “satiereal” that has been shown in studies to significantly reduce cravings for food and result in weight loss.
In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, parallel group study consisting of 61 healthy, mildly overweight women between the ages of 25 to 45, researchers found that in a group by group comparison within the first two weeks of the study, that the Satiereal group began to show statistically significant weight loss as a group in comparison to the placebo group.
Montel swears by the snack saying that it has helped improve his mood and keep off unwanted pounds by reducing his craving for cookies—an especial weakness of his.
Image source: Courtesy of Wikipedia
“Satireal, a Crocus sativus L extract reduces snacking and increases satiety in a randomized placebo-controlled study of mildly overweight, healthy women” Nutrition research 30 (2010) 305-313; Bernard Gout, Cedric Bourges and Severine Paineau-Dubreuil.