Conquer Binge Eating

Do you eat great all day long and then suddenly consume everything in sight? You aren’t alone. There are many triggers to binge eating. Skipping meals, boredom, depression, and loneliness are a few. Different methods work for different people. If you don’t know what method works best for you, give them each a try and note which one gives you more comfort and less binging.  Let’s go over what we can do to stop this unwanted behavior.

Preventing Deprivation 

Some people resonate more with preventing deprivation. This would look like the following. With exception to foods that make you sick, like food intolerance, food sensitivities or allergies, don’t put any food on your “do not eat list”. You have the ability to eat what you want at any time so don’t limit what you eat. Let’s be honest, you are eventually going to eat those foods anyway. If not today or tomorrow, then next week or next year. Especially if you are just taking a break from your “diet”. The key is to limit how much you eat of it. Even better if it is something outside your house and shared with someone. This will reduce cravings for it. There is no deprivation.

Smart Avoidance 

Others resonate more with smart avoidance. When you know yourself and you know the foods that cause uncontrolled overindulgence you may benefit more from avoiding them altogether. It might be a few items like potato chips or a specific kind of cookie (Like the wafer cookies at Trader Joe’s with the layers of peanut butter covered in chocolate…Ummm, ok, that might be a little too personal), or it might be a whole category like sugar or alcohol. There is plenty of scientific evidence of the addicting qualities of both sugar and alcohol. Staying away completely is a viable health strategy for most.

Be Kind

Don’t beat yourself up when you go off your plan. Those emotions increase the stress that will contribute to poor choices. Binge eating often happens automatically. Knowing your binging patterns can help break them. Crowd them out with other activities. If your binging occurs most commonly at night when you are tired but not sleeping, consider going to the gym or taking a bath and don’t forget to drink a lot of water. You can also try a new activity that occupies your brain like an art project or writing your thoughts or feelings down.

Are you still at a loss for what to do? Come in for an appointment and let’s brainstorm together. 

Dr. Stacey

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