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Fresh Start Cleanse
About Lesson

Emotional Triggers

Food is emotional. We often turn to food for comfort and/or to relieve stress. It can become an emotional coping mechanism.

What emotional habits do you have in place? This is a good time to reflect on what these may be for you.

Emotional triggers = mindless eating

What is mindless eating? That’s simple! It’s not being present with your food while you are eating. It is when you are eating just for the sake of eating, not because we need fuel, but because we are avoiding or soothing some emotional need.

During the cleanse, practice building awareness around your eating habits. Look at WHY you are eating to discover your emotional triggers.

Everyone has different emotions which trigger their eating habits. For some it could be depression or sadness while others may eat when agitated or angry.

Celebrations can be triggers, like Christmastime or birthdays. It’s funny how we feel the need to celebrate these events with the unhealthiest foods possible. Where did that come from? Why can’t our celebrations be healthy? Is this a trigger for you?

Boredom or feelings of emptiness, childhood habits, social influences can all be triggers. In this section we will look at the different moods which can trigger different cravings.

A food for every mood

We all know that we go to different foods for comfort, but did you know that the type of food you reach for can tell you a bit about what emotion you may be feeling? The following are patterns which can serve as a guideline to help bring awareness to the emotion you may be suppressing with food.

Note: A lot of the following content lightly touches on emotional, mental and even spiritual needs. In my course Life More Abundantly I dig deeper into receiving abundance in these areas.

Crunchy food: Crunchy foods are generally dry and harder to bite into, like pretzels and chips. Generally, craving these foods reveal deep, unprocessed anger stored in the subconscious mind and throughout the body. The crunch sensation expresses these feelings of anger. The emotion of anger is stored in our liver and often in tension around our heart. Supporting these vital organs can help you get to the root cause.

Consider: Do you need to work on anger? What are you angry about? Deal with the root of the anger and process the initial hurtful event that formed it. Create a daily habit of forgiveness around that hurtful event. Focus on feeding your liver (and potentially heart) with good foods and take a long break from any stimulants and depressants. Moving the stagnant energy with exercise, pilates, dance, or yoga can be very helpful (and cardio if your heart is tense).

Salty food: Salty foods are covered in stimulating salt, like salted chips, olives, or nuts. Generally, craving these foods reveals high stress and a lack of relaxation. The salty sensations distract the mind from the stressful mental loops the mind habitually plays. Physically, this is connected to adrenal health. It is possible that your adrenals may be overtaxed and over-stressed. Adrenals are responsible for our stress and cortisol levels. Stress is also connected to fear. When you are afraid, your body goes into ‘fight or flight’ mode and demands energy from the adrenals. Fear is also stored in the kidneys, so it is worth supporting them as well.

Consider: What are you stressed about? Is that stress rooted in a deeper fear? Deal with the root of the stress by adjusting your beliefs around the fear. Create a habit of relaxing the mind in the morning and the night through prayer, mindfulness and/or mediation.

Consume: kidney-loving foods.

Gluten or wheat: Gluten and wheat foods, like breads and bagels, are sedating to the body (especially now with 95% being GMO). Generally, craving these foods reveals a desire for comfort and safety. Since they sedate your body in ways similar to morphine, your brain stops thinking clearly, and your body begins to feel heavy and sluggish. Physically these cravings can be a sign of excess candida (a harmful parasite which wants to be fed). Also, feeling unsafe is often linked to fear, which is stored in the kidneys.

Consider: Why don’t you feel safe or comforted? What other ways can you create stability and structure in your life? Deal with the root of the instability by journaling through the above questions. Create simple healthy habits in your daily life to give yourself some much needed stability.

Consume: kidney-loving foods.

Sugar: Sugary foods are any foods which are high in simple carbohydrates, like most pre-packaged food and snacks, fruit (especially dried), candy, honey, syrupy foods, and desserts. Generally, craving sugary foods reveal a lack of excitement. Sugar stimulates your body in much the same way that cocaine does. Physically, these cravings can be a sign of excess candida, bad bacteria or other parasites.

Consider: Why do you lack excitement in your life? What can you do to add joy into your life? Lasting excitement comes from working towards a purpose or goal in life. So then, what is your goal in life? To find your purpose, ask yourself: What do I really want in my life? What would I do if money and time were not an issue? Why would I do that? What big change does the world need right now that I can help be the solution for?

Consume: Since sugar is hard on the liver, eat some liver-loving foods.

Chocolate: Chocolatey foods contain cocoa beans and usually also contain dairy and sugar. Discern if you’re looking for sugar generally or specifically chocolate. Often, craving chocolate is related to a lack of fulfillment in one’s sexual desire. Also, women may crave the magnesium in chocolate if they lack this mineral during the their menstruation.

Consider: Am I fulfilled sexually? Do I have a lot of societal suppression or objectification around my sexual expression? What would I really like to experience sexually on the physical, emotional, and spiritual levels? Additionally, spending time to remove energy blocks by deeply relaxing your reproductive regions can bring immense healing to your body. Consider also that the reproductive regions are related to your creativity. Are you expressing your heart creatively in your life?

Consume: I use doTERRA’s bone-nutrient complex to boost my magnesium levels. Magnesium helps with sleeping and restless leg syndrome in addition to unpleasant menstrual symptoms.

Alcohol: Alcohol includes wine, beer, hard liquor and any other forms of alcohol consumption. Generally, craving alcohol means a lack of acceptance. Physically, alcohol numbs the body and is a tool of temporary escape when used in excess. It also can create a false sense of confidence on which people can develop an emotional dependency. Alcohol is also considered to be the most harmful drug in our society, considerably more harmful overall than heroine. The overindulgence of alcohol is a highly negative coping mechanism.

Consider: Where are we not accepting ourselves? Are we in constant judgement of ourselves? Do we constantly have expectations that we are never able to fulfill? Or is it that we are not able to accept those around us? If you feel quitting is going to be challenging, look up ‘Allen Carr’s easy way to quit’ which has helped people I know quit smoking and drinking. This technique can be used for any bad habit.

Consume: Support your liver with liver-loving foods since alcohol is toxic to the liver.

Corn: Corn is added to a lot of pre-packaged foods as a filler, refined as High-Fructose Corn Syrup and is 99% GMO in North America. Generally, craving corn is related to a feeling of inferiority especially in relation to a desired success. This feeling of lack related to your ideal success is fuelled by not seeing yourself as a successful person and by entertaining negative self-talk in your thinking process. Corn is pretty much sugar so compare notes with the sugar section as well. In addition to the negative effects of sugar, eating GMO corn products also creates a lot of gut problems due to the extreme genetic changes to the corn which are designed to kill bugs (and happen to slowly kill humans).

Consider: What do I think about myself? Do I love myself? Do I talk to myself like someone I want to encourage? Do I allow myself the space to be imperfect? Deal with the root of the feelings of inferiority and thank yourself daily for all the aspects of you which you love. Listen to positive affirmations around your daily goals.

Consume: Since corn sugars are hard on the liver, eat some liver-loving foods.

Fatty food: Fatty foods, like fast foods, fried foods, and hamburgers, often contain unhealthy trans-fats. We will learn more about healthy and unhealthy fats in later lessons. Generally, craving fatty foods is associated with shame. These feelings of shame are often stored in belly and reproductive organs, although they can be stored anywhere in the body. These fats can be especially dangerous for the heart.

Consider: Do I love my body? What parts of myself do I like and dislike? Have I been conditioned to dislike these parts of myself by the media and society? What do I really love about my body? Do I have shame about any other part of my life, habits, or personality? Have I been conditioned to feel shame in these areas as well? Deal with the root cause of your shame and find the balance of self-acceptance and positive self-growth. Move your body with dance, yoga, pilates, or any other form of movement you enjoy.

Consume: Eat heart-loving foods.

Wow! We went deep there. From now on, be aware of your food/mood connection. Take time to reflect and go deep so you can make a lasting change. Also, as you consistently follow this cleanse, you will dramatically shift your cravings for the better and it will have a lasting healing impact on your health.

Next Steps

Choose the Customization Path which feels right for you.

  1. Identify one of the foods you crave most in the above list.
  2. Answer the questions from the ‘Consider‘ and ‘Consume’ sections related to that food.
  3. Consider making the changes suggested in that section.
  1. Go through all the cravings you have in the above list.
  2. For each of these cravings, answer the questions from the ‘Consider‘ and ‘Consume’ sections related to that food.
  3. Commit to making a few of the changes which resonate with you from those lists.

How interested are you in learning about the connections between your food and your mood?

A. Very Interested.

B. Interested.

C. Somewhat Interested.

D. Minimally Interested.

If A or B: I recommend the Impact Path.

If C or D: I recommend the Steady Path.

Inspiration Corner

Affirmation: I am so happy and grateful that I take time to understand my emotions and I naturally see connections between my food and my mood. I love learning how to process my emotions and I have more self-awareness every day.

Resource: Food can be an addiction and it’s not always easy to shift our habits. Allen Carr has a powerful book on how to quit smoking called ‘easy way to quit’. Although you may not need to to quit smoking, the technique shown offers a powerful framework which breaks the traditional approaches (where they ask you to identify as an addict) and offers an empowering alternative which shows you the willpower you already have within you and how to access it.

Resource: Dr. Carolyn Leaf also has a book called Think and Eat Yourself Smart: A Neuroscientific Approach to a Sharper Mind and Healthier Life. This book will help you better understand the connection between your thoughts and how you eat.

Resource: If you need additional support after using the other resources on this page, research alternative addiction therapies. You may want to consider something other than using NA or AA. This is because their techniques rely on identifying as an addict and reinforcing that idea regularly with meetings (which can keep some people reliant and addicted for life). My way of thinking is that energy flows where our attention goes: what we focus on we become. So don’t focus on the addiction but rather focus on the new quality of life which you would like to experience. If you would like further support, I find these Christian ministries to be very effective: Restoring The Foundations, Bethel Sozo.

Super Support

As great as books and courses are, sometimes it’s nice to have some physical support to help us break bad habits. One excellent option is doTERRA’s Black Pepper essential oil.

There are also a lot of essential oils to support you emotionally. If you’re interested in learning more about this, email my assistant ( and request to join Oil Camp 3 (or to get more information about it). In Oil Camp 3, you will learn about the different essential oils which can support your mood.

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