Binge Eating

I am now almost 30 days post my Whole30.  And what have I been doing – binge eating.  Why?  I am trying to figure that out.

I googled “Binge Eating” and what I found gave me pause for thought.  Most of the articles out there on the internet are about “emotional” eating.  They indicate that bingeing is a way of dealing with negative emotions.  So I thought about this – am I currently in a negative space?  I just finished the Whole30 and actually feel quite good about my accomplishment and how I look and feel – I am truly not in a negative or depressed state of mind.

I know that there are people out there who have real eating disorders with emotional overlays and causes.  I eat because I truly enjoy food.  The few times I have actually been really and truly depressed (spousal betrayal or health issues of a loved one) I have not felt like eating.

I did find an article about bingeing by Nia Shanks.  For those of us that are not really emotional eaters I believe this better defines bingeing.  It does for me.  Full disclosure – I am not an expert on this subject nor do I believe that the reasons for binging as Nia Shanks puts them forth is everyone’s – but they did resonate with me.

It’s the whole yo-yo dieting problem.  We restrict what we can eat – for me it was the Whole30 and restricting myself for 30 days – and then Hallelujah – the 30 days is over and we can indulge.  But that’s the problem in my nutshell.  I feel restricted.  Sure I can avoid sugar, dairy, grains, beans and soy for 30 days, but in my mind when those 30 days ended I was free to eat all the foods that were restricted and I did binge.  I looked over my past diet history and saw that this is a trend on all the diets I have ever been on.  And the result is that success is fleeting.

How do we conquer bingeing?  I believe we need to stop the “dieting”.  Fast weight loss solutions do not work.  As I noted in an earlier post – over 95% of those people who successfully lose weight gain all if not more of the weight back.  I believe that for me I need to set some long-term goals around health; find ways to eat my favorite foods in moderation; find new favorite foods which are good for not only my health, but taste really good too; start physically moving more; and stay off the scale.

I would really love to hear your thoughts on this and how you conquer bingeing.  Sharing new ideas and our successes, as well as our slip ups, can only make us better.

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7 thoughts on “Binge Eating

  1. Lifestyle changes take a while. If we have been eating in a not so healthy way for most of our lives, it can take a while to just say no to those familiar ways if we have not been convinced that eating the new way is possible to maintain. Such changes take at least 6 months on average to accomplish. Often support is needed for this. That’s why I became a health coach; I strongly want and love to help people accomplish their goals for optimum health.

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    1. Thanks for sharng Frances. You hear all different time frames out there on how long it takes to change a habit and I now agree that 30 days is not long enough.

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  2. I have suffered with bulimia for a long time and up until recently food has ruled my life. YO-yo diets, bingeing, fasting and so on. I made the conscious decision to initially remove and then limit fructose intake..not a diet to lose weight. I was amazed when I realised I hadn’t weighed myself for a week – normally would weigh myself at least 5 times a day. I don’t have sugar spikes and therefore now only eat when I am truly hungry. Been liberating.

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    1. Thank you for sharing. I removed all sugar for a month and then found it hard to limit it – thus the bingeing. I’m hoping to find that happy limit, but for now I’m going to try to restrict sugars as much as I can.

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  3. Great discussion! While I believe that emotional eating is real, I do not think it is the root cause of binges. I struggled for years with binge eating and bulimia, and I always believed that it was my fault — for being weak, overly emotional, out of control, etc. Because that is the message that diet culture feeds us! Eventually I came across the book Intuitive Eating and it helped me see that bingeing is really a biological response to hunger, because restrictive diets make your brain think that you are in constant danger of starvation. Really fascinating stuff, and it helped me not only escape the guilt but also find a way to reset my brain so it wouldn’t continue to seek out binges. That’s what worked for me, and I hope you find what works for you, too! Always good to see people discussing binge eating so others know they are not alone!

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