I used to be a binge eater, I want to help others recognise behaviours of binging, ultimately providing solutions to help you cut out the habit that is making you gain fat, and making you feel miserable…
The Worlds BIGGEST Binger . . .
There was a phase in my life at the age of 16 where I was wolfing down 5 to 10 chocolate bars a day, devouring bags of crisps, take-aways for tea, etc. Basically if the food was bracketed as ‘unhealthy‘ I would eat it and in large quantities.
My binging lasted for around 6 months. I felt high on life for 5 minutes after each binge as the feel good endorphins surged through my brain. Elation was shortly lived and I would soon find myself feeling depressed, with thoughts that lacked focus, I felt tired, my skin complexion was uneven and dull, confidence was low to name but a few things I can recall.
I was literally using food to mask my emotions and feelings. At that time in my life I lacked understanding of why I was binge eating. In hindsight I look back and I am grateful for my experience because I have used it to delve deeper and learn more, studying why we binge, finding ways to help others through my experiences and the services I offer. I have written this article to help those of you out there (there are many) who suffer with binge eating. I want to help you understand some of the reason why you binge and provide some pragmatic solutions to help you.
Are you a Binge Eater?
Do you eat junk foods in large quantities regularly when you are happy? Sad? Bored? If you answered yes to any of the questions, then it’s imperative that you pay attention as this article is going to help you.
Binge Eating Makes You Feel Happy. . .
What in this world can provide you with the same buzz and instant gratification that you get from junk food? Drugs maybe? Shopping Spree’s? I’m struggling to rack my brains in all honesty. To achieve a similar high feeling, often requires us to work hard, devote lots of time and make sacrifices, it can take a while to achieve the high, and it’s not instant. Food however can provide you with instant gratification, as soon as it enters the mouth. Alot of people therefore use food to provide a quick powerful buzz, to increase happiness, cover up boredom and mask unpleasant emotions.
Food Hangover . . .
I’m sure most of you reading this will have experienced a bad alcohol hangover. When you binge eat you experience a similar hangover feeling, your body goes into a food coma state, week and lethargic, it’s extremely unpleasant.
If you were to go out and have just a couple of beers, you may still feel off colour the next day, but you not going to be wiped out. Similarly, If you have a small food treat, it’s not going to devastate your body too much. However binging on a pack of chocolate McVities biscuits is the equivalent of gulping down 10 pints or a bottle of wine. It’s is going to knock your body for 6 and make you feel like cr*p.
After binge eating we soon feel guilty, regretful and start to beat our self up mentally. The problem lies in our lack of self control, 1 leads to 2, 2 leads to 3, etc, etc. I remember I used to tell myself I could control my binging by just having 1 chocolate bar, it didn’t work. It only worked once I controlled my eating habits, which took time. We need to change our relationships with food if we are to instil life long habits.
We All Have Chinks In Our Armour . . .
I believe a major problem we have as individuals in society is that most of us are too afraid to admit to ourselves our personal weaknesses. We all have them, we all have chinks in our armour, areas we are unhappy with, faults we have, areas of personal weakness. It’s easy to ignore our problems and go through life barely changing ourselves because we are not willing to address and face our problems, they are too painful. We would prefer to put them in box, lock them up and through away the key.
If you seriously want to address your binge eating, it’s time to delve deeper and face your demons. Here are some helpful tips which have helped me personally and helped the clients who I have worked with.
1) Awareness : By being aware of your Binge Eating you are half way to solving your problem. Admitting to your problem is a big step, it means you are now aware, and able to search for solutions to stop binging.
2) Self Reflection : At the end of each day, in the bath or shower, or in bed take 5 minutes to reflect. What emotions have you experienced? How have they effected you? Have you eaten poorly because of them? What could you have done differently looking back? What have you done that’s been positive? Make-sure to reflect daily, acknowledge faults and praise yourself for successes.
3) Go Food Shopping on a full stomach : When you are hungry and go food shopping you are increasing your chances of putting ‘binge treats’ into your basket as your cravings are higher. Always ensure you go shopping on a full stomach.
4) Food Shopping In Advance : Buy in a weeks worth of healthy foods in advance. You are planning ahead, and by committing to spending money on healthy food, it may decrease the likely hood of food wastage, as you have funded it from your own back pocket. If you waste the food purchased you may as well have posted your money down the drain!
5) Healthy Cheat Meals : When I say don’t eat donuts, cakes, sweets, and pizza what comes to mind? Probably eating those foods. Don’t deprive yourself. As soon as you say I can’t have this, you will end up feeling deprived. Instead make your own healthy treat foods e.g home made curry, protein pancakes, protein brownies, etc (for recipes please Contact Me). Make-sure to factor in your cheat meal in advance, so you have a small goal to work towards and aim to keep the ingredients natural (if the food rots quickly it’s a good choice!).
6) Ask For Help : Never be afraid to ask for help. You don’t always have to confide in a friend or with a family member. There are people who want to help, and can do so in a private setting. If you feel you need extra help, make-sure you seek the support level you need. You could visit your doctor, seek out a nutritionist, psychologist, etc. You can confide with your expert and learn to manage your binge eating habits.
I hope that you have learned something from Binge Eating : Why It Happens and Solutions. As always if you have any questions please Drop Me An E-mail and i will try my best to help you.