Summary: More often than not, being over weight has to do with eating too much. According to Ayurveda, over eating is often due to emotional eating, which is a direct result of a lack of self-love. In this article, a very sweet Ayurvedic treatment is prescribed to increase self-love, which will help curb emotional eating, thus helping you lose weight and get fit.
In the first part of this series 5 Healthy Weight Loss Tips from Ayurveda for the Physical Dimension we explored Ayurveda’s recommendations for healthy weight loss from the physical perspective and in this article we will explore what Ayurveda has to say about the emotions and weight. Essentially, the most important factor in weight gain is excessive eating and Ayurveda states that one of the main reasons for over eating is to compensate for a lack of love in one’s life. Compensating for love with food is emotional eating and below is how Ayurveda hopes to alleviate this problem and thus curb unhealthy weight gain.
The famous old song, “All You Need is Love”, in the case of ending emotional eating could not be more true. Ayurveda suggests that often times self-love is lacking in those who are overweight and this compounds the problem of emotional eating. In other words, lacking self-love one turns to eating as a substitute, which leads to a negative body image as one gains excess weight, which makes it even harder to love oneself. This downward spiral can be stopped by cultivating self-love and the exercise below does just that.
Background of Ayurvedic Treatment for Emotional Eating
The following exercise can be done as part of a Yoga series for the Heart Center (Anahata Chakra) or it can be done independently as it is detailed here. The design of this particular technique is based on the following 2 concepts:
- Spirit follows form and form follows spirit. In other words if you love someone (spirit) you may gently caress them (form) and the other side of this relationship is that, if you gently caress them (form) you will start to feel some love (spirit).
- In the Ayurvedic and Yogic Chakra system, the center of the palms relates to the heart center (Anahata Chakra) and this chakra is the seat of love and compassion.
Practice Details of Ayurvedic Treatment for Emotional Eating
So here is the very sweet Ayurvedic/Yogic technique to increase self-love, end emotional eating and get your weight gain under control.
- Lie on you back with arm straight out to the sides (like you are on a cross).
- Now close your eyes, gently raise your left arm and bring your left palm towards your face. Then gently kiss the center of your left palm and whisper “I Love You” to yourself.
- Now lower your left arm and bring your right arm up and kiss the center of your right palm again whispering “I Love You” to yourself.
- Continue for about 5 minutes.
- To end inhale deeply hold your breath and visualize your body exactly as you want it to be, slim and trim, then get up with a smile feeling good about yourself.
Summary of Self-Love to End Emotional Eating
So excess weight, which is often related to emotional eating, according to Ayurveda is due to a lack of love and in many cases a lack of self-love. So an additional tip from Ayurveda in order to increase self-love is to stop criticizing, judging and being harsh with yourself. Treat yourself kindly and with love and you will notice a change in your eating habits, for as the soul is fed, there is less need to over feed the body.
Internet Resources Below
Other Weight Loss Resources:
FDA Nutrition & Weight Loss Q&A
How to Use Fruits & Vegetables to Manage Your Weight (Center for Disease Control & Prevention)
Tips for Exercise Success (American Heart Association)
How to Stop Emotional Eating (Mayo Clinic)