Weight Loss Support - Wake up and eat everynight! Can't stop




hughs dad
07-26-2013, 07:46 AM
Hi guys,

I have a pattern where no matter what I eat during the day, I will wake up at midnight or 1am and eat sugary, salty food. It's as if I can't sleep unless I do. Has anyone else ever gone through this and beat it??

Thanks, HD


Wannabeskinny
07-26-2013, 07:53 AM
Yes, at the height of bingeing and addiction yes. What helped me is to understand that this is not an emotional trigger or a weakness of mind and spirit. It is a physiological response to food. If you ignore these urges they will go away. It's like withdrawal. Understanding that this is a physiological response helps me to feel empowered enough to do what it takes to build new habits. I know it's difficult but you can overcome it. I find that if I decide to fast a minimum of 12hrs between dinner and breakfast it helps me squelch the need for after hours snacking.

kaplods
07-26-2013, 08:24 AM
Knowing the physiological source of the hunger helps me too, but not enough to completely eliminate the problem.

David Kessler's book, The End of Overeating really helped me understand the physiological nature of sugary, salty, fatty carbs. The knowledge has helped tremendously, but knowledge alone wasn't enough.

What works best for me, is ridding the house of trigger foods. I don't even keep butter and sugar in the house at the same time, because I would find myself so desperate for the fat, salt, sugar combination that I would make butter toffee or caramel sauce (for dipping apples in) in the microwave.

Sometimes it almost felt like my body was being hijacked. In my head, sane Colleen would be screaming, "Don't do this," while addict Colleen responded "eff you."

For me to gain control, I had to get rid of most of my trigger foods. Hubby and I bought several opaque bins(so I couldn't see the foods) for the pantry, and sorted all of the food into the bins except for canned goods. All trigger foods and wheat (I'm mildly allergic) went into bins with hubby's name written on the outside and the bins went onto the top shelf (where hubby could easily reach, but I couldn't without a step stool).

I know that this probably sounds ridiculous, insane even, but Kessler in The End of Overeating cites research that found cocaine addicted lab animals would choose sugary foods over cocaine.

The "addiction" response varies from person to person, and not only for food. Some recovering alcoholics can abstain while hanging out in bars and can even keep alcohol in the house for guests or a spouse. Others have to purge their homes of alcohol and avoid social gathering places where drinking will occur.

There's no shame or pride in either. You just need to do whatever it takes to be successful.


scood
07-26-2013, 08:54 AM
Hi

Can you tell me how you know it is a physiological response to food??? Not sure what that actually means

I started again today tracked all my food to every calorie and then I sabotaged my self by eating 3 small pkts of veggie chips now Im annoyed at myself

And I couldn't possibly be hungry

Scood

luckymommy
07-26-2013, 09:02 AM
I used to do this when I was gaining weight uncontrollably. Then, once I started back on my plan, I saved the calories for the nighttime. I was desperate to sleep. Eventually, I would have something like a banana and a string cheese and I didn't allow myself anything else, even though I was desperate for it. Now, I don't have anything. Last night I had terrible urges but I just fought through them. Most nights, they're not terrible but I still want to eat at night and have a lot and since I can hardly have a little, I try not to even start.

The point it, it was a gradual process and I still struggle a lot on most nights but it's worth it because now that I"m up this morning, I'm not even hungry. Did I sleep well? Nope, but I still am glad that I didn't succumb to my impulses.

One last thing....make sure (aside from ridding your home of binge-worthy foods) that you are not dehydrated. Also, I have cut refined sugar out of my life and I think that helps too because the more sugar I have, the more I want.

sacha
07-26-2013, 09:09 AM
Are you undereating in the day (drastically)?

Also, how long have you done this? Is it a habit? A sleep association? Have you replaced it with another association? Have you told yourself you will NOT leave the room even if you are awake the rest of the night?

TBH it may be something complex but chances are it could just be a bad habit that needs to be broken too.

tricon7
07-26-2013, 09:14 AM
For me to gain control, I had to get rid of most of my trigger foods. Hubby and I bought several opaque bins(so I couldn't see the foods) for the pantry, and sorted all of the food into the bins except for canned goods. All trigger foods and wheat (I'm mildly allergic) went into bins with hubby's name written on the outside and the bins went onto the top shelf (where hubby could easily reach, but I couldn't without a step stool).

I've discovered that with my trigger foods, if they're simply put out-of-sight it helps me tremendously. Moving that lemon cake from the countertop where it beckons me every time I walk by to inside the pantry lessens the temptation for me tenfold. Not sure why; I still know it's there, but it works.

kaplods
07-26-2013, 09:20 AM
Hi

Can you tell me how you know it is a physiological response to food??? Not sure what that actually means

I started again today tracked all my food to every calorie and then I sabotaged my self by eating 3 small pkts of veggie chips now Im annoyed at myself

And I couldn't possibly be hungry

Scood



Carbohydrates affect the body/mind much like weak narcotics. They even reduce pain, which is probably why most comfort foods are carbs.

I spent decades trying to master "emotional" eating by ignoring cravings. I thought I ate to cope emotionally.

Then I found moderate low-carb and paleo diets, I discovered that emotions were not causing the cravings, blood sugar drops were. Not only that, my emotions became much more manageable. I wasn't eating because there was something wrong with my emotional control - my emotions were out of control because of what I was eating

Personally, I have more success when I assume that 99% of my issues are biochemical in nature. Addressing the biochemistry keeps me sane.

As for proof or explanation of my belief that most hunger and cravings are physiological, I can only lead you to the books that made me consider, experiment, and eventually conclude that biochemistry was mainlt to blame (and how to address it).

The End of Overeating, David Kessler
Good Calories, Bad Calories, Gary Taubes
Refuse to Regain, Barbara Berkely

And countless books with a low-carb, autoimmune-diet nd/or paleo focus.


But the real proof was in experimenting. By logging my food, emotions, and physical symptoms (because I have multiple health issues), I discovered that a moderately low carb, paleo diet not only reduces cravings, hunger and my weight, it also drastically reduces my symptoms. I feel better and stronger physically and emotionally. Mood swings are almost nonexistent except during pms/tom. Even pms/tom symptoms are greatly improved (and return full force if I overindulge in carby foods).

For me, the books supported the theory as a possibility, but only my experimenting and documenting gave the theory credibility. More experimenting and documenting proved the theory to my satisfaction.

scood
07-26-2013, 06:11 PM
Dear kaplods

Thank you for the explanation, could you please explain what a paleo diet is. I have dieted all my life and know my food values

I don't even know why I would sabotage myself, my personal life is pretty good. I am journaling my food. In saying that I have only just started again

Sometimes I realise I don't eat enough, I work shift work. By the time you sit down I often just eat whatever.

I need to get on track with three meals and 2 snacks maybe, do you stop eating at a certain time? I have hot milk every night of my life to help with my calcium and I would still like to do that. I've done that for ever and a day

I buy the correct food so it is there then for me to choose properly, by about 4
I need to choose wisely smething to stop the craving. I believe it is. A habit

Scood

kaplods
07-26-2013, 08:01 PM
Paleo also known as Primal and "caveman" diets. There are vegetarian, and meat-heavy versions, and some allow foods others ban, but the premise behind them all is that grains are not a normal part of the human diet.

Some allow dairy, eggs, fruit, and honey and others do not. Some allow modern foods as long as the impact to blood sugar is low (such as low calorie sweeteners).

Some are low-carb, and some are high carb.

What the all mostly agree on is that meat and plants (especially plants that are safe to be eaten raw) should make up most of the human diet. Grains, if eaten at all, should be eaten only occasionally and in very small amounts. Some grains are also considered safer than others.

In principle, I like the idea of paleo (eat foods a caveman would easily identify as food), but thete's also a fair bit of nonsense woven into many of the diets that call themselves paleo.

hughs dad
07-26-2013, 10:24 PM
WOW! THANK YOU EVERYONE!

I reallly appreciate the responses and they helped a ton. To be honest, it is very much like an addiction to another substance. Before I go to bed EVERY SINGLE NiGHT I say, "not tonight". You are going to stay in this room no matter what. Then at 12pm or 1am or sometimes at 12am and 3am I am propelled out of bed like a possessed person and I am eating ice cream, peanut butter and jellly, pizza, you name it... I hate it so much. But the feeling is that of a survival menatality. it's as if I don't eat I'm going to die.

I know that is not true, but that is what it feels like.

I'm getting ready for bed now and I am going to not eat until 7am tomorrow. I will just sit in my bed until 7am comes.

Wish me luck. And thanks again. I'm going to check those book sugguestions out.

Thanks everyone!

hughs dad
07-26-2013, 10:27 PM
Btw, I am downloading the book "The end of over eating" as we speak. Technology is wonderful! Have a great night everyone!!

scood
07-26-2013, 11:25 PM
Thanks for the interesting reading, I'm going to download the book. Yesterday was my first day back and had a shocking day, I really sabotaged the day.

Got off to a good start this morning, went to watch the grandsons play football and all the kids wanted poppy to buy them macca s, I thought great of all times.

I very rarely even go to McDonald's. It was testing time so I brought a chicken wrap and a diet coke, even tho that wasnt good. I don't know McDonald's food so I don't think anything there would of been the right thing to buy.

The only thing I buy there is their caramel Sundays and their coffee. I will buy a muffin every now and then.

So I was very pleased with my choice thinking I dont know any of the calories there. And I felt I was joining in

I'm working night shift tonight so Ill plan something for tea and keep something for later when you work shift work I seem to want something late

Can anyone tell me are rice noodle good for dieting, I like noodles, pasta stir fries, I'm not really a sweet tooth or cake eater. I like muffins and seeded bread

Scood

TammiL
07-26-2013, 11:28 PM
I find that drinking a big glass of water helps. But really it's you deciding not to eat the things. You might have a really crappy couple of nights but it get more easy with time.

luckymommy
07-26-2013, 11:55 PM
I think I've read that it takes 3-4 weeks to establish a habit but only a few days to undo a habit....not sure on exact numbers but the point is that it does get easier over time. Hang in there and I wish you success!