Dawn, who recently started our Am I Hungry? Mindful Eating Program Facilitator Training, posted a question on our Training Forum. In short, she noticed that she eats when she’s not hungry, “just because the food is there” and wanted to know why. (I posted her full question below the video.)

It is a deceptively simple question, but as you’ll see, the answer can be complex. I find that the Mindful Eating Cycle is really helpful for peeling back the layers. Dawn agreed to do a live (casual) video call with me to talk through her challenge and share it with others who struggle with with eating food just because it’s there.

“I just finished Eat What You Love, Love What You Eat and I have noticed something interesting about myself, and I would like a little help and guidance on it. Regarding the question, Why I eat?, I realized that one of my main reasons is just because the food is there. I’m not bored, I’m not sad, I’m not lonely, I’m not punishing myself, or bingeing… but if there is a plate of cookies, I will always just pick one up. And then I go back to my desk, and I think about the cookies! Not because I’m hungry or because anything is wrong, but just because they are there! I don’t even really like sugar all that much, but if there is a cookie, I will eat it. But if there aren’t snacks out and available, I don’t crave things, I will choose healthy things for lunch and dinner, and I won’t even think about food. But again…if its there, I WANT IT!!! It’s so frustrating and I don’t even know why I do it! I just can’t resist food if it’s there! Any advice or insight? Does anyone else struggle with this? What would be a good way to apply the mindful eating strategies to help this situation? If I have a participant with this same situation, I’d like to know how to help them.”