Question:I think I might be a binge eater and need suggestions that are practical to fight off my urge to eat. Thanks.
First of all it sounds like you are not sure if you are truly a binge eater, so I initially would like to share some warning signs of binge eating, and then give you some tips to help fight off this unhealthy eating behavior.
Some of the more common signs of binge eating include:
• Eating large amounts of food when not physically hungry.
• Eating much more rapidly than normal.
• Eating to the point of feeling uncomfortable.
• Eating alone because of shame or embarrassment.
Also, a person with a binge eating disorder often has feelings of depression, disgust, or guilt after eating and can have a history of considerable weight fluctuations.
While I cannot stress enough the importance of meeting with a licensed professional (we have one at Sensible Fitness!) for a comprehensive assessment, let me share a few tips for helping you.
1. Eat 5-6 small meals, 3-4 hours apart each day. Breakfast, lunch, and dinner with 2-3 nutritious snacks.
2. Never skip breakfast. This leads to overeating later in the day. Studies show those that eat breakfast are thinner than those that don’t.
3. Quit dieting. Strict diets and deprivation trigger food cravings. Eat nutritious foods that you enjoy in moderation, and do not label foods as “good” or “bad”.
4. Write down everything that you eat, where you are eating, who is around you when you are eating, and thoughts/feelings occurring when you are eating.
5. Most binge eating is done alone. Try to eat with supportive people and only eat in places that food is supposed to be eaten, like the dinner table. Stop eating while on the couch, on the computer, or on the road.
6. Weigh yourself only once per week. The scale should be treated as a way to measure weight and not self-esteem.
7. You may hate it, you may do everything to avoid it, but you must exercise.
Professionals suggest searching your soul prior to an urge to binge. What are you actually feeling that is causing you to binge? Boredom? Anxiety? Insecurity? Depression? Whatever the emotion, acknowledge the feeling and ask yourself “How can I respond to this in a constructive manner vs. a destructive one?” It is all about attitude! Look at this as a way to make yourself a better and stronger person rather than giving in and later feeling bad about yourself. Although you may not win every battle, each time you fight off the urge it is a victory and they will add up to be the groundwork of success.
If you need professional help, I would recommend you to contact us at Sensible Fitness Personal Training Center, as we have Gary Weiler on staff, who is an licensed Addictions Specialist and he can help you a great deal.