This is a requested article and I think it is a really important topic to speak about on binge eating. Some of us might be going through this right now and it’s actually sabotaging our workout plan and we want to be able to stop binge eating. So I hope this article will be able to help you out.
What is binge eating?
Binge eating is characterized as impulsive overeating in which you consume huge amounts of food within a short period of time. When you’re bingeing you are out of control. It’s a vicious cycle. You feel depressed, anxious and angry and so you binge. And then you feel more depressed, anxious and angry about bingeing and so you binge again.
What are the causes of binge eating?
Two most common causes are:
1. Emotional eating
You feel anxious, angry or upset and you choose to use food to suppress your emotions instead of dealing with it.
2. Extreme diets
The issues I have with extreme diets is that they do not teach lifestyle changes which can be maintained over the years. Hence when you deprive your body from the nutrition and food your body needs, eventually your body will rebel and overcompensates with the first binge.
The bingeing starts irregularly but over time it will become more frequent and it will become a habit. According to some research 3.5% of women suffer from binge eating. And that is double the amount of bulimia and more than 4 times of anorexia.
Binge eating happens regularly, at least twice a week over a period of 6 months. So ask yourself these questions:
1. Do you feel out of control or unable to stop when you are eating?
2. Do you think about food all the time?
3. Do you force yourself to eat even when you are full and feel sick after?
4. Do you stock up food and eat in secret?
5. Do you eat to escape your worries, stress or to comfort yourself?
6. Do you eat continuously throughout the day, with no planned mealtimes?
7. Do you feel disgusted, guilty or ashamed of yourself after eating?
8. Are you desperate to take control of your weight and eating habits?
If your answers are yes to most of these questions, let’s take a look at how we can stop sabotaging our workout plan with unhealthy binge eating.
10 Tips to overcome binge eating
Here are my top 10 tips to stop binge eating for life:
1. Keep binges at bay
Instead of depriving yourself from your cravings and indulging to the entire bar of chocolate over the weekends, why not have small small portions of chocolate few times a week? So instead of eating directly from the chocolate bar, break it into small pieces, have a couple of the small blocks and store the rest away.
This way you are more in control of food portion and you are enjoying your food instead of feeling guilty afterwards.
2. Set yourself a timer
When you have the urge to binge, stop! Set yourself a 15 minutes timer and think: do you actually feel hungry or are you actually feeling upset, stressed which make you want to stuff yourself with all the chocolate bars?
If you’re feeling upset take your time to think what’s going on. Or is it just boredom? If it’s your emotions then let’s not nom yourself with food but take the courage to deal with your emotions. This leads to my next tip:
3. Don’t be afraid to open up
Don’t hide your emotions, but speak with someone, with friends or your family. Women tend to binge on their own. Instead I want you to pick up the phone, call someone that you’re close to and share your emotions. I’m sure they will have the time to listen to your problems and to give you some positive advice to make you feel good. Or you can even speak to a professional that will be able to help you out to deal with your issues.
So stop using food as your comfort, but instead speak to someone because this will be a long term success in avoiding binge eating.
On the other hand, if you find yourself going through the fridge looking for something to eat, but you are not sure what to eat, you are most likely experiencing boredom cravings. Grab yourself a glass of water, drink it and walk away.
4. Find another distraction
Do whatever you need to do to get your mind off the craving. Go out for a walk, go for a jog, do an activity you enjoy. You can relax, meditate or even go to a nap. When you wake up you will feel so much better and you will not be binge eating.
5. Chew on gums
If you really have to put something into your mouth because of your cravings or because you’re stressed out, chew gums. This will reduce your craving and it will also help you to reduce your stress level and to calm you down.
6. Record your indulgences
Even if you’ve just eaten an entire chocolate bar it’s not too late to do something about it. Write down what triggers you to binge so that you can overcome it in the future. Learn to take control of the situation instead of allowing your emotions and your food to take control.
7. Eat your breakfast daily
Those who do not have breakfast are more prone to binge eating and to have higher calorie meals throughout the day. So start your day right by having your breakfast.
8. No more restricted diet
Please do not ever go on a restricted diet ever again. You have tried them and they have been proven not to work. In fact, you might have even put on more weight before you started dieting. Start educating yourself with healthy eating. Look for healthy and delicious recipes and enjoy your cravings in moderation. This will not only help you to lose weight, but you will be able to sustain it for life.
9. Get active
Plan an exercise program which you will want to maintain. This can be either working out with FitneAss Workouts or join a dance club. Staying active does not only make you feel young or look your best, but it will also keep you happy and energized.
Do not punish yourself in the gym after a binge. Stick to your regular workout routine. Maybe you can go for an extra walk but avoid the mindset of “working off” the calories you consumed.
10. Learn to love and forgive yourself
You did not start bingeing over night and you will not be able to stop that quickly either. Every step you take away from binge eating will make you feel better about yourself. It will take months or even years to completely change your habits.
Start to love yourself for who you are and not what you look like. Just like any other addictions, binge eating develops into a habit. In order to break this cycle, start picking up new positive habits and focus on them. The key to success is to try and try and try again and you will get there.
If you enjoyed my tips please share this article with your friends and family. Stay fit!