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Anyone manage to quit dieting with positive results?

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Old 04-12-2013, 04:02 PM   #106
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http://fyoured.com/post/36059452662

interesting article much in line with bingefree2013 thoughts.
Thanks for posting this, veggiedaze! Powerful, as freelancemomma stated above.

I'd love to read bingefree's take on this.
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Old 04-12-2013, 06:01 PM   #107
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Sigh...help...i am so frustrated. Same story as always...i manage to stick with a diet for a month or so, and then i start binging, and the binging becomes more and more frequent until the point where the diet just CLEARLY is not working, and then i figure it's time for a diet break or a new plan, even though a diet break is not warranted since i've barely lost any weight. I keep trying to just raise my calories, basically i'm at maintenance level calories right now, and i STILL can't stick with it!! If i just "stop dieting," however, i'll end up higher than my weight of 160.5 this morning, which is not acceptable. I just don't know what to do I know what will probably happen is that i'll just give up for a couple of weeks, gain another few pounds, panic, and then start on a new diet, do great for the first few weeks...and thus the cycle begins again. Well...if that happens...i guess the good news is that i'm not GAINING weight, just relosing and regaining the same 5 pounds. Better than gaining i guess
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Old 04-12-2013, 06:35 PM   #108
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sorry to hear you are having a tough time surfergirl2. I have definitely done the sticking to a diet, bingeing, and then changing the plan thing. I never really did no dieting or plan before now except on vacation where i suddenly stopped bingeing. so that could say something or it could have been that i was just too busy and having a good time to even think about bingeing. In the last couple years i was mostly just trying to aim for maintenance calories but i am just too obsessive about it and it really took over my life and upped my stress levels, and the binging did not stop. I'm brand new to the no diet thing and have only been able to have the courage to do it because it works so well with my sister, and the support on this site is a huge help. Don't know if it will work out with me or not but so far so good. I haven't binged, but I have by no means been perfect either. I've had a couple over eating episodes and just really trying to figure out my own psychology. I am also not weighing myself because I just don't want to factor that into the equation. for now I just really want to free myself from bingeing. Who knows, if I gain a tonne of weight I may be compelled to count calories again, but would have to accept the binging might also return (if it even goes away in the first place). I really don't know anything. just taking it one day at a time and so far it's going okay, not perfect, but okay.
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Old 04-12-2013, 07:00 PM   #109
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Better than gaining i guess
Not really. Cycling weight over and over and over causes the body more stress than just staying put, even at a higher weight. It may only be 5 lbs, but hey, if you lose it and gain it back enough, that can add up to 50 lbs + recycled over the years. Not to mention the mental toll it takes along with the physical one. You waste your life worrying about something others won't even notice about you.

Not that I can talk, after all, it's 5 measly pounds that got me started on this fast track to heck in the first place! My biggest regret in life is not having left myself alone when I had the chance.

Besides, you want to quit bingeing, and I guarantee you won't until you stop trying to manipulate your body. You will make yourself fatter. It won't be 5lbs it will be 10lbs. The more you diet, the smarter your body gets.

It's like being poor. The less money coming in (calorie slashing), and the more you try to spend on an unneeded luxurious expense (weight loss), the more you penny-pinch in the end (slowed metabolic rate;body not losing despite best efforts). And even after you win the lottery and money flows like water (no more dieting), you don't immediately feel all that secure. After all, you've spent years being poor; it could all go away in a moment. Better hoard some in the bank for a while (initial weight gain that scares most people back to diets). It takes maybe a year for you to feel comfortable enough to spend on a regular basis and now your account is balanced out with your normal life expenses (normal metabolic rate restored, and your body gravitates where it's supposed to be).

Still, no one can be talked into this. YOU have to be ready, and you aren't, because the thought of weight gain still scares you. Perhaps one day. I wish you luck

Last edited by bingefree2013 : 04-12-2013 at 07:07 PM.
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Old 04-12-2013, 07:34 PM   #110
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I was just damn hungry, because I spent so long ignoring my hunger all through recovery. I spent so long trying to cheat my body into eating less than it wanted and/or needed, and now all that hunger had come back and hit me hard.
I love this! You can't win against your body and you don't want to. If you DO win, then you die (because you have effectively starved yourself to death, and no, you don't have to be 80lbs to die of starvation).

The bingeing (from dieting) isn't BED. It's reactive eating. 10,000 calories may seem alarming, but it's alarming to the body to give it only 1,000 - 1,500 calories and call it a day for weeks and months on end. You ain't fooling noone.

And notice that the author effectively stopped eating such amounts, and stopped wanting them when her body had stabilized itself. She didn't decide where her weight stopped, her body did. The problem with all of this comes from our society telling us all to become unnaturally thin, so we all feel fat at perfectly healthy weights and are deathly afraid to just EAT and get on with recovering.

I also liked that she pointed out that if you're meant to be BMI 24 and you diet down to BMI 21, while not underweight clinically, for your own body it very well may be and it will kick your butt trying to get back up there.

At the height of my restrictive days I was OBSESSED with food. It was unsettling to say the least. I even used to dream about food, even foods I wasn't all that fond of, like donuts. My hands and feet were ice cold even in the summer months, my hair was slow to grow and brittle, my skin was dry, my bowel movements happened once every four days, and I was moody and tired. Sexy. Clearly my body was trying to tell me something.

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Old 04-13-2013, 07:41 AM   #111
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I have read The End of Overeating and I continue to question the concept of addiction, as does the U.K. professor who wrote the book The Myth of Addiction: http://www.amazon.ca/Myth-Addiction-.../dp/9057022370

I believe there are degrees of habituation, and that some habits are VERY entrenched and difficult to break. But I don't believe in a separate entity called "addiction" that robs us of all control. I believe we choose our behaviours on some level, even our unhealthiest ones, because they provide immediate and dependable comfort in a difficult world.

Let's say an all-powerful genie came up to you (generic you) and told you that if you didn't quit [insert health vice of choice], the person you love the most in the world would have a week left to live. I'll bet you would be able to stop the behaviour with relatively little difficulty. If that same genie commanded you to get rid of your Type 1 diabetes or else, you'd be hard pressed to comply. The way I see it, we DO have control over our so-called addictions. We just don't always use that control in the service of health, and that's OK.

From Wikipedia: <<The life-process model of addiction is the view that addiction is not a disease but rather a habitual response and a source of gratification and security that can be understood only in the context of social relationships and experiences. This model of addiction is in direct opposition to the disease model of addiction.>> Needless to say, I agree with the life-process model.

I also tend to be underwhelmed by all those PET-scan studies that show brains lighting up at this or that stimulus. The logic leading from "frontal gizmoid cortex lighting up" to "addiction" is rather shaky, IMO.

F.
I've never considered myself addicted to food. Over the past 2 decades that I've been a binger I've only seen it one way... I'm weak-willed, and powerless, and a failure. Meanwhile our food supply has become increasingly built solid on preservatives and corn syrup, laden with sugar. Sugar has a physiological and biological effect on your body and your brain - that has been proven.

I have never refered to my food consumption as an addiction. I can see however that it is a form of dependency (chemical, emotional, physiological), and primarily an act of habit. The frontal cortex lighting up as you call it are pathways in the brain that get emblazoned with the same pattern over and over again. For example, every time I get into my car my mind immediately goes to Burger King. Well, ever since I was a teenager I'd sneak off in my car and go through drive thrus. I've been eating in my car for decades. So now, hungry or not my mind immediately turns to that as soon as I get into my car. Call it an addiction, a habit, whatever you want to call it, it's as simple as Pavlov's dogs.

The only notion that I'm not willing to entertain is that I am not motivated and that I don't have willpower. If I didn't have either I wouldn't have successfully completed college and graduate school, I wouldn't own my own buisness, I wouldn't have a successful marriage and wonderful friendships, and have achieved all the success I've ever worked hard for. My mother always told me (who is naturally skinny and distant from food) "You're such a successful person, it's hard to believe you can't conquer food."
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"Binging is a descent into a world where every restriction... is cut loose. At its core is a feeling of deprivation.. a feeling you can never get enough. Binges do not signify a lack of willpower or inability to care for yourself. On the contrary, binges are a urgent attempt to care for yourself when you feel uncared for. They are the voice of survival. Binges are the mark of the self that says, 'I am tired of feeling deprived, of being told I am wrong, that I am bad." - Geneen Roth
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Old 04-13-2013, 07:47 AM   #112
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Originally Posted by surfergirl2 View Post
I agree very much, especially with the following sentence: "◦Trying to cheat your way out of hunger is only going to either make you very miserable, or just much, much more Hungry at a later point, or both." Whenever i've tried to diet, the longer i stick with it and the more severe the restriction, the more hungry i will end up weeks later. I may feel fine for weeks but once the hunger hits, OH MY GOD. It all adds up and comes back and hits you. At least for me.
What? This blog post definitely does not suit me. I actually have BED. Her 1 binge episode is something that those of us with BED live with regularly. It's not a phase. What the heck is she talking about?
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"Binging is a descent into a world where every restriction... is cut loose. At its core is a feeling of deprivation.. a feeling you can never get enough. Binges do not signify a lack of willpower or inability to care for yourself. On the contrary, binges are a urgent attempt to care for yourself when you feel uncared for. They are the voice of survival. Binges are the mark of the self that says, 'I am tired of feeling deprived, of being told I am wrong, that I am bad." - Geneen Roth
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Old 04-13-2013, 10:49 AM   #113
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^She's talking about her recovery from anorexia, a very deadly disorder and the subsequent extreme hunger that followed (reactive eating *episodes*, not one time binge).

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Old 04-13-2013, 12:35 PM   #114
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Just chiming in to say thank you all for having such a powerful, civil, and necessary discussion. I've been lurking in this thread since it began because I'm one of those people that tends to take a LONG time to listen and absorb and process before I react.

There's a lot of wisdom and experience here. I'd like to throw out one question - it's been alluded to in a couple of posts, but I'd like more direct responses to it.

What about the person (and this was me) who has never had a "normal" relationship with food? I was overweight/obese from childhood. I first remember binging (eating large amounts in secret) when I was around 8. Even when not actively binging, I ate enormous amounts of food, drank sugary drinks, and thought nothing of having an entire package of cookies/cake/chocolate. There was no guilt associated with eating so much because most of my family ate that much. Binges were different in that they were times of out of control eating, and I did try to hide those.

All that to say, how does a person with that background develop a normal relationship with food? I was clearly out of touch with my hunger/fullness signals long before I started dieting, and any kind of change in my eating habits would have felt like "restriction."

To take it one step further, in adulthood I did lose about 30 pounds without actively dieting. I was extremely physically active at that time for various reasons and my binging had all but stopped. However, even then, I was eating large quantities of (regular and "healthy") food at every meal. My BMI was still in the obese category and I had health problems related to the extra weight.

Please know that I don't ask to be snarky - I ask because I wonder how I could have done it differently, and how we can help those around us in the same boat, both here in 3FC and in real life.
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Old 04-13-2013, 01:43 PM   #115
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wow, I'm really enjoying this discussion. I think everyone has very valid points. I do believe that in the case of the blogger who was recovering from anorexia, that obviously her binges were caused by actual hunger from starving herself. I think it's worth people considering whether or not this applies to them before considering that something else might be at play. I don't however believe that everyone who is calorie counting or following a "plan" is starving themselves. For me, I honestly don't believe I was starving myself while counting calories and now that I am not counting calories and taking the "intuitive eating" (a term I use loosely) approach, it is only confirming that I am pretty sure I wasn't starving myself. For me I think the problem was largely psychological restriction and not physical restriction, both of which make a person food obsessed. I do not think I am necessarily a food addict, but I do believe that I have a very high "attraction" (how freelance would put it) towards high sugar/high fat/salty processed foods. I feel I am very lucky in that I truly love "healthy food" and so it puts me at a great advantage with intuitive eating and "not dieting". In my opinion, I do not believe intuitive eating works well when eating a diet that consists mostly of processed foods for people who have a high attraction to hyper palatable foods. For some people that do not have this attraction I think they would not have a problem intuitively eating these foods. I think maybe these people are in the minority when you look at americas obesity rates that go along well with the increase in availablitly of processed foods and the fact that todays culture is not really a sit down as a family and eat a home cooked meal anymore. And i don't think it's true that everyone in america is fat becuase at one point they started a restricted diet. For alot of people, becoming fat proceded the restriction (not all obviously). I do think for me though it has been harmful to completely eliminate processed foods as it just made me anxious and feeling deprived when I would sit and eat my giant bowl of fruit and yogurt while everyone around me ate a donut. very psychologically damaging.

I think it's good for an individual to ask themselves what proceded what. If they were normal eaters before restriction, perhaps restriction is their problem,and it may not be physical restriction, but psychological or both. If being overweight or obeses preceeded any diet or body image issues, maybe there is a true food addiction taking place where it has nothing to do with restriction. Maybe it is not even food addiction but something else like trauma or abuse that preceded these behaviours. Maybe it's simply that you are someone that is "highly attracted to hyper palatable foods" and that was all that was available to you as a child therefore your intuitive eating skills could not really be applied.

If you are someone that finds themselves not being able to control intake of even "non-processed" foods without any kind of restrictive eating or diet taking place, whithout any psychological problems like body image/abuse, then maybe there is an actual physiological problem where your brain just does not give the proper signals. This is where maybe a visit with a medical doctor could be in order.

Also, maybe if you are not restricting now but have in the past, that binging has become a habit where there is a strong neurological pathway that has formed where it has become a way to cope with everything. I think this is partially the case with me. I am reading up on CBT techniques that I think will help with that. Now that I am not feeling like I am restricting, have been a normal eater as a child (but did overeat hyperpalatable processed foods), and had a happy childhood with no abuse or other issues (although I've dealt with PTSD and some depression/anxiety), I feel like it's the habbit part I need to work on. It sounds like wannabeskinny may be dealing with this habbit thing as well. I don't think I could work on the habit thing if I still felt restricted.

Jenmusic - it is interesting that you did so well with not bingeing when you were active. Maybe the endorphins you were getting helped to sort out any actual neurological problems you may have. Also, you mention that you were overweight as a child and that your parents were also overweight. What kind of food did you have around as a child? If you were surrounded by mostly "processed" food than it could be you are someone like what i suspect I am to be highly attracted and unable to use intuitive eating for these kinds of foods. I suspect (not sure of course) that if I had grown up in a family where my parents bought alot of processed foods, then I may have been an overweight child. If you overeat all food, it may not be this reason at all. You could try the no diet approach by filling your house and surrounding youself with unprocessed foods you ACTUALLY LIKE and put no limits on this or rules and see what happens. If you are still overeating, then there could be something else going on. I would be patient though and not give up right away. You may also want to dig deep and see if there is anything going on in your life that you are medicating with food ie. breakup, trauma, past abuse etc.

My point is, I don't believe and will never believe there is a one shoe fits all approach. I was reading a blog from a guy who believes he is an actual food addict. Moderating trigger foods didn't work for him. Only complete abstinence has worked and he has been binge free for several years now. but his life has been very altered as there are many acivities and things he must avoid. but he feels it was the only way for him to be free. For me, absitnence DOES NOT WORK and I believe I am not a true addict. I just find certain foods very pleasurable and can eat them whether I'm hungry or not. If I'm full from dinner I cannot eat any extra broccoli, but put a piece of cheesecake in front of my face and sure, there is always room for that, even as a child. But when it's out of site, it's out of mind for me. It's the work donuts that I SEE and are right in front of me that I say no to that triggers a binge later on every time almost.

Last edited by veggiedaze : 04-13-2013 at 02:04 PM. Reason: sorry jenmusic, not "well with your weight loss" but "well with not bingeing"
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Old 04-13-2013, 02:45 PM   #116
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Sorry, I don't have a lot of time, but I wanted to address you first paragraph veggie: If you were at one time, cutting calories for the purpose of losing weight, and eating below what your body needed to maintain it's processes, even if that was only a few hundred calories/day, and you experienced reactive eating as a result (bingeing and strong cravings for food), then, I beg to differ, and your body does too, that you were "starving."

Starving does not have to mean emaciated or weighing 90lbs. If you were 200lbs and dieted unnaturally down to 150lbs through restriction, that is still starving the body. The body still catabolized on itself.

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Old 04-13-2013, 02:56 PM   #117
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bingefree I have not tried to cut calories and lose weight for many years now. When I did that in my earlier twenties yes, i lost weight to where I was much thinner than what I am now. The weight I am now is what it seems to settle at when I am bingeing alot. It's not a weight thing for me. sure I don't want to be overweight or obese, but I could still gain plenty of weight and not be considered overweight. My control over food has been to inhibit the bingeing, not to lose weight. At one point I was regularly eating more than my sister was eating while pregnant. I did not gain weight. I was still bingeing. Not everyone wants to lose weight. I just want to not binge. In fact I'd be happy to gain some weight. I am 32 now and a little extra fat in my face would do me some good and take some years off.
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Old 04-13-2013, 03:00 PM   #118
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definitely bingefree i would agree that it all probably started as reactive eating. It's been a long time now (about 10-12 years since bingeing started and about 8ish years since I stopped conciously trying to lose weight) so I'm pretty sure it's a habbit now and a coping mechanism as opposed to reactive eating from starvation, and the extra stress from trying to control everything doesn't allow me to deal with the habbit and learn better coping mechanisms.

Last edited by veggiedaze : 04-13-2013 at 03:49 PM. Reason: added "and a coping mechanism" and "learn better coping mechanisms". Also added "from starvation" after reactive eating.
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Old 04-13-2013, 03:15 PM   #119
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I also agree bingefree2013 that if someone is 200 pounds and diets down to 150 in an unhealthy manner they may be starving. That does not mean everyone that diets down from 200 pounds to 150 pounds and then starts bingeing is starving. If they start bingeing then sure, it could be they were starving; but the bingeing may also be due to something else like repressed psychological issues or many other things they put aside while losing the weight due to the exhileration of seeing those pounds come off. Once the pounds came off perhaps those other issues came back because they never delt with those issues. I am not going to tell anyone "how they are"; I will just tell them "what may be happening". Only the person can figure that out. People only walk in their own shoes.

*edit. I think telling someone what is "definitely happening to them" may sometimes be wrong and lead them down the wrong path when they are vulnerable and desperate and willing to believe anything. I don't want to tell anyone that they are bingeing becasue of the same reason why I am bingeing, because my cure may not be their cure.

Last edited by veggiedaze : 04-13-2013 at 03:54 PM. Reason: *wanted to clarify.
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Old 04-13-2013, 06:50 PM   #120
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Just chiming in to say thank you all for having such a powerful, civil, and necessary discussion. I've been lurking in this thread since it began because I'm one of those people that tends to take a LONG time to listen and absorb and process before I react.
JenMusic - so glad to see that you've joined the discussion.

While I am in absolutely no position to address your question (I'll leave that to those who are), I just wanted to say that I agree with your assessment of this discussion.

I have learned more from this thread than any other one on 3FC since I returned about a month ago. I want to thank veggiedaze for starting it and for all the wonderful posters who have contributed so much to it. I don't respond every time I read it, but it is the first thread I check each time I come online to read the forum.

I believe there are a lot of members here who could benefit from what is being discussed on this thread. No doubt some have been reading and learning, even if they choose not to participate. Which of course is perfectly fine!
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